Reclaim Open Learning

better online learning for higher ed


September 19, 2013 by Claudia Caro Sullivan

Jesse Stommel, University of Wisconsin at Madison
Sean Michael Morris, Hybrid Pedagogy

Our goal with MOOC MOOC was to start a conversation, to reflect at a meta-level on the nature of massive open online courses. We used Instructure’s Canvas for MOOC MOOC, because we wanted to model open course design with tools that any educator or learner can easily access and use. We wanted a container that participants could hack and that would allow the course to live openly on the web.

As the course progressed that network overflowed into open platforms like Twitter, WordPress, Tumblr, Github, and more. We created the MOOC so that anyone could join, nobody had to sign-in, and each iteration of the course was left open after they were over to allow access to non-synchronous participants.

MOOC MOOC inspired others to reexamine their approaches to digital learning (whether from a teaching, administrative, technological, or student perspective). As the first activity for the course, nearly 500 participants worked together in seven separate documents to create essays about MOOCs. Working in groups of about 50 participants each, participants succeeded in massively co-authoring and massively peer-reviewing their articles. Many of the participants had never used Google Docs before.

MOOC MOOC was architectured to be a catalyst. The course was designed to outgrow its container, and was just brief enough to make space (and leave space) for community engagement and response. MOOC MOOC did not end when the course finished. The ongoing digital community that rose up around it sustains the ideals  of the course, rampantly turning them to new ends.

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