MOOC Success Factors: Proposal of an Analysis Framework

Jose Azevedo, Margarida M. Marques
Journal of Information Technology Education: Innovations in Practice  •  Volume 16  •  2017  •  pp. 233-251

From an idea of lifelong-learning-for-all to a phenomenon affecting higher education, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) can be the next step to a truly universal education. Indeed, MOOC enrolment rates can be astoundingly high; still, their completion rates are frequently disappointingly low. Nevertheless, as courses, the participants’ enrolment and learning within the MOOCs must be considered when assessing their success. In this paper, the authors’ aim is to reflect on what makes a MOOC successful to propose an analysis framework of MOOC success factors.

A literature review was conducted to identify reported MOOC success factors and to propose an analysis framework.

This literature-based framework was tested against data of a specific MOOC and refined, within a qualitative interpretivist methodology. The data were collected from the ‘As alterações climáticas nos média escolares - Clima@EduMedia’ course, which was developed by the project Clima@EduMedia and was submitted to content analysis. This MOOC aimed to support science and school media teachers in the use of media to teach climate change

By proposing a MOOC success factors framework the authors are attempting to contribute to fill in a literature gap regarding what concerns criteria to consider a specific MOOC successful.

This work major finding is a literature-based and empirically-refined MOOC success factors analysis framework.

The proposed framework is also a set of best practices relevant to MOOC developers, particularly when targeting teachers as potential participants.

This work’s relevance is also based on its contribution to increasing empirical research on MOOCs.

By providing a proposal of a framework on factors to make a MOOC successful, the authors hope to contribute to the quality of MOOCs.

Future work should refine further the proposed framework, by in testing it against data collected in other MOOCs.

distance education, lifelong learning, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), success factors, framework, content analysis, climate change
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