Why we need immigration and higher ed reform
By . President Obama on Monday unveiled a $100 million grant program as part of a new initiative that he said was critical to ensuring the U.S. remains a global economic powerhouse. Obama called for plans to help thousands of Americans “fill the new jobs of this new century” by using nontraditional courses to turn them into top-level coders, programmers and other technology workers. “If we’re not producing enough tech workers, over time that’s going to threaten our leadership in global innovation, which is the bread and butter of the 21st Century economy,” the president said in remarks at a Washington conference of the National League of Cities. More...
EU fehlt der Plan für Südeuropas verlorene Generation
Von Dirk Schümer. In den südlichen EU-Krisenländern haben die Alten auf Kosten der Jungen die Arbeitsmärkte ruiniert. Jetzt sitzt eine ganze Generation nur herum und lebt auf Kosten der Angehörigen – oder wandert aus. Mehr...
Foreign students not worth the cost: principal
By Amy Chyan. National Sun Yat-sen University's (中山大學) principal, Yang Hung-duen (楊弘敦) said recently that the more foreign students who are registered for classes at Taiwanese universities, the more money the government and universities lose.
According to reports, a student studying at a public university in Taiwan costs the government at least NT$300,000 and NT$150,000 at a private university.
In comparison, the yearly tuition fee required from foreign students is only NT$100,000, reports said. More...
Fee cap needs simplifying as UQ warns some unis already in breach
MOOCs are becoming mainstream in Europe?
Conference Mapping the European MOOC Territory: Presentations online
2) MOOCS in the Era of Higher Education's Digital transition by Larry Cooperman
3) Making European Education More Agile by Pierre Dillenbourgh
4) MOOC as accelerator of change by Willem van Valkenburg
5) The mainstreaming of open, online and flexible learning by Airina Volungeviciene
6) eCompetences and eQuality: from moocs to social moocs in Europe by Claudine Muhlstein-Joliette
7) Towards a Crowd-sourced Open Education Strategy for Employment in Europe with Qualification-focused MOOCs by Stylianos Mystakidis
8) Fostering collaborative investment in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) by Bernard Nkuyubwatsi
9) MOOC didactics Matters. A hands-on vision for MOOCs and Connected Learning Practices in Europe by Markus Deimann
10) Our MOOC with Moodle by Mary Cooch and Helen Foster
11) Do we need a shared European MOOC platform by Tiago Santos
12) MOOCKnowledge: Establishing a large-scale data-collection about participants of European Open Online Courses by Marco Kalz
13) MOOCs in Question: Strategic Insights from Two Institutional Experiences by Mark Brown
14) First results on survey benchmarking European collaboration on MOOCS by Darco Jansen
15) Open Debate on MOOC uptake in Europe. More...
Survey on Benchmarking MOOC strategies in Europe
Supporting the Porto Declaration on European MOOCs
Porto Declaration on European MOOCs available online
MOOCS have continued to attract considerable media coverage as governments and universities respond to the open and online education movement. MOOCs are at this moment seen as a disruptive force and an important driver for change—for both better and worse. The growth of MOOCs has helped to make institutions, governments and societies at large more aware of the possibilities of open and online education. Read the declaration.
Porto Declaration on European MOOCs
Europe must seize this moment to grab the opportunities offered by MOOCs.
MOOCS have continued to attract considerable media coverage as governments and universities respond to the open and online education movement. MOOCs are at this moment seen as a disruptive force and an important driver for change—for both better and worse. The growth of MOOCs has helped to make institutions, governments and societies at large more aware of the possibilities of open and online education.
Risk and threats posed MOOC movement
However, we must also recognise the risks that come with the advent of MOOCs. Current evidence suggests that MOOCs do not reach those that most need access to higher education. The majority of participants who join MOOCs are already well-educated and live in developed countries. Moreover, they already have the digital and language skills needed to successfully complete MOOCs. The threats that MOOCs pose to the traditional educational system need further analysis and public debate. One threat, for example, is that only universities with celebrity academics and the financial means can develop MOOCs and offer them for free to a massive audience. Some consider this approach nothing more than a self-serving marketing exercise by a few universities with the effect of promoting the dominance of Western knowledge, a new kind of imperialism.
It is important to note that MOOCs remain relatively poorly defined and they should not all be assumed to confer similar benefits. Nevertheless, we believe the open and online learning movement has great potential to educate the many in a flexible way that meets the needs of today’s learners for an increasingly complex world. We must embrace opportunities to open up education in a manner consistent with European values of equity, inclusion and social justice, and to increase life-long learning and social mobility.
We must embrace full openness to all
In this respect we must stress the importance of full openness so everyone can benefit from the open and online education movement. The principle of ‘openness’ in this sense applies not only to removing financial barriers, but also to open accessibility, open licensing policy, freedom of place, pace and time of study, open entry, and open pedagogy.
Beyond the goal of social inclusion we see openness as an important driver for promoting development of skills, enhancing knowledge transfer and increasing the pace of innovation. Consequently, we urge governments and institutions within Europe to support and actively implement the Paris OER Declaration of UNESCO (2012).
A collective European response is needed
At this point, however, it is observed that the MOOC movement is dominated by the United States through both the number of course offerings and leading service providers, such as EdX, Coursera and Udacity. EU MOOC activities are mainly concentrated in Western and Southern Europe, and are being predominantly driven by individual institutions or small groups based on a limited number of platforms (e.g., FutureLearn, Iversity, FUN, UNEDcoma, Miríada X). Moreover, they do not fully reflect the cultural diversity of Europe and serve a limited number of language communities (with the exception of OpenupEd).
Importantly, we stress that MOOCs must not be seen as the outcome or exemplar of online education. Rather they need to be understood in a wider context as there is a long history of research on open and online education and a variety of approaches and tools to provide quality learning opportunities to all.
MOOCs must be aligned with and used as a lever to advance the European Digital Agenda and the recommendations of the recent high-level EU report promoting the modernisation of the higher education system. The opportunities to provide scale in learning opportunities and open educational resource creation is a key reason for European collaboration.
Strong support EC and governments needed
As such we call upon the European Commission and individual member governments to strategically invest in digital infrastructure and capacity development in order to harness the potential of MOOCs for European society at large. We need a collective European response to minimise the risks of the MOOC movement and to maximise the opportunities for both society and business. A pan-European response is crucial if we want MOOCs to advance the many possibilities for a more flexible and modern higher education system, and to fully open up education to the many that need the skills and knowledge for 21st century jobs. It is essential that a cohesive and collaborative effort is adopted in Europe to counteract the risks and to fully realise the opportunities of open and online education.
It follows that governments and the European Commission in particular, need to play an important leadership role in collaboration with the major organizations representing European providers.
Universities need to strengthen their collaboration
In addition we call upon European higher education institutions to increase their level of collaboration in order to promote capacity development in open and online education for the benefit of all. A shared European services model that goes beyond the interests of one institution or even of one or few regions is required. Such an approach needs to be aligned with existing European policies and the wider digital and modernisation of higher education agenda. In this regard, MOOCs are not an end goal but a powerful vehicle for advancing the objectives and targets that we have already set for education in Europe.
Thus the Porto Declaration calls upon all to embrace the possibilities the open and online education movement offers the Knowledge Society and stresses the need for stronger collaboration in Europe, based in the principles of transparent cooperation, mutual benefit and collective incremental advantage.
27 November 2014. More...
The HOME project - Objectives
With the HOME project we want to develop and strengthen an open network for European cooperation on open education, in general, and MOOCs, in particular. The specific objectives of this project of HOME are to:
- determine the opportunities and characteristics for a European cooperation on MOOCs and to further develop these characteristics based on European values like openness, equity, quality and diversity;
- explicate and develop the didactic and pedagogic models for MOOCs on a European scale
- develop the conditions for shared educational services in offering and monitoring European MOOCs
- develop sustainable business models for joint efforts on these European MOOCs at a global, European, national and institutional level.
- build up a sustainable open knowledge network for these types of MOOCs which is open to the whole world.
- initiate activities in different learning communities to enhance European-wide competence development on main topics related to developing and offering MOOCs
- create guidelines and the policy incentives on a local, national and European level for an open knowledge network in MOOC offerings. More...