The Institute of Technology Sligo (Sligo, Ireland) will now become Ireland’s first public higher education institution to offer a free online course or a Massive Online Open Course (MOOC).
Traditionally, colleges charge fees for online programmes and offer accreditation upon completion. By comparison, under the MOOC model, courses are free, are not accredited and have ‘massive’ enrollments. Ireland’s first MOOC will commence at IT Sligo this September and will take the form of a free, six-week online course in Lean Sigma Quality, the foremost quality process improvement approach for companies in the manufacturing and service industries. The first MOOC will be delivered by Brian Coll and Dr John Donovan, academics from the institute’s School of Engineering & Design who both lecture on the Institute’s online BSc and MSc in Quality.
Miríada X, plataforma de Cursos Online Masivos en Abierto (MOOC’s), ofrece formación gratuita a través de 58 MOOC’s ofrecidos por 18 universidades iberoamericanas.
Los usuarios de Miríada X pueden matricularse gratuitamente en todos aquellos cursos que sean de su interés. Pueden cursar estos programas formativos sean o no alumnos de la universidad que los imparte.
Miríada X ofrece a los equipos docentes de las 1.232 universidades iberoamericanas socias de la red Universia una plataforma para publicar e impartir MOOC’s, a los que se puede acceder desde cualquier parte del mundo de manera gratuita.
La información sobre los 58 MOOC’s se puede consultar en este listado de cursos.
Thanks to funds from UK-based Jisc, about 6,500 newly digitised museum objects from University College London and the University of Reading are now available to students, teachers, and the public at large.
Rare Ancient Egyptian artefacts (enhanced by 21st C. 3D imaging), digital images of zoological specimens, strange and beautiful anatomical prints, sixteenth-century portraits, and intriguing nineteenth-century scientific gadgets are just some examples of the digital artefacts recently added.
“Teaching using museum objects is increasingly popular in universities. However, hands-on time is always limited and providing access to our collections digitally overcomes barriers to independent student learning," says Leonie Hannan, teaching fellow in object-based learning at University College London.
This online compendium of objects, which will add to a bank of 150,000 already existing digital resources from the two museums, can be freely viewed, downloaded, and used on a Creative Commons licence. It is available through Culture Grid, the UK gateway to heritage resources.
Also available is a broad range of interdisciplinary Open Educational Resources (OER) that are both apt for online learning, and suitable for burgeoning initiatives like Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs). These OER's can be accessed through JORUM (the online educational resource sharing site), using the search term OBL4HE.
"We’re proud at Jisc to see how university museum staff has joined forces with academic colleagues and students to ensured the resources created respond to the needs of the teachers and learners," asserts Paola Marchionni, programme manager at Jisc.
The European Multiple MOOC Aggregator (EMMA) was launched April 14, 2014. The project, led by 12 universities and companies in 8 European countries, will provide access to MOOCs in different languages using automatic transcription.
EMMA is a 30-month pilot project supported by the European Union. Its goal is to allow learners to access MOOCs in different languages with the help of automatic transcription. The pilot will offer a total of 16 MOOCs, aiming to involve over 60 000 participants.
The website will aggregate and host courses provided by European universities who wish to provide their courses in multiple languages. Secondly, the platform will allow users create their own learning paths by bringing together various units from different MOOCs.
Image: Screenshot from EMMA website
The first MOOCs will go live in September 2014 and the course descriptions are already available on the EMMA website, although registration is not yet open.
Project coordinator Rosanna De Rosa commented, “EMMA provides an exciting opportunity for both students and MOOC providers in Europe to benefit from a simple user-friendly platform that provides unique multilingual access to MOOCs – we are looking forward to rolling out this service in the coming 6 months.”
The HOME (Higher education Online: MOOCs the European way) project is aimed at building a sustainable partnership with a view to exchange ideas and experiences related to European MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). This project is focused on dissemination and on developing a sound strategy for sustaining the open network of European MOOCs
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. MOOCs are a new approach to lifelong learning with free access to selected courses and some services to very large audiences. HOME project will share approaches and instruments to develop MOOCs with European HEI’s, based on expertise of the partnership. Hellenic Open University has a long experience in online and distance education and MOOCs will contribute to the creation of innovating curricula and by strengthening learning provisions for non-traditional students. HOME hosts 23 partners ranging from frontrunners in the adoption of MOOCs, having a long experience in online and distance education, to institutions considering MOOCs as part of their policy in the next year.