A new study reported in Inside Higher Ed takes a dim view to sub-10% completion rates in a sampling of MOOCs.
How many people start watching Breaking Bad or Walking Dead on Netflix and don’t get engaged? Technology is making it easier for us to graze, lowering the costs of just trying things. Should that be a negative? Should we even be comparing the numbers (even back-of-the-envelope) to traditional education?
Besides, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education, 4.3m freshman started out a college journey in 2004. Only a little over 1m graduated – or 24%.
Granted that number is a degree, not just a course. But the numbers feel comparable to me.
I’ve dropped out of two MOOCs. The first one I barely got past the first week. I was mostly curious to see Coursera’s platform and sample the quality of the discussion.
I just dropped out of a Coursera MOOC called “Surviving Disruptive Technologies.” I’ll be reviewing my experience in more depth, but while the content was interesting (Netflix, Kodak, IBM etc), even the title was a turn off. Who wants to ‘just’ survive?
I hung in through a peer review session (peer review has long been an interest and was a major focus of the first version of Waypoint), again to see how things worked and the quality of the experience. Then I bolted.
I also haven’t watched Arrested Development or Walking Dead or, come to think of it, Season Five of Breaking Bad.
Does that mean they are worthless, or somehow of poor quality? I’ve downloaded a zillion apps for my various devices and only use a few regularly.
We should celebrate the vast numbers of toe-dippers and forget the application of metrics from a previous paradigm. Kodak measured the sales of print paper and chemicals…measured those metrics while riding the company straight into the ground.