In the Era of soaring university tuition costs, many students are opting out of the traditional education path and instead utilizing recently invented MOOC classes: Massive Online Open Courses. These are free, online classes that students can take in order to broaden their knowledge.
Do these MOOC online classes result in a degree or certification?
MOOC courses do not yet offer degrees, but several MOOC websites offer the ability to take proctored exams in offered subjects so students can obtain certificates. They are available from Coursera and EdX for an additional fee, and if proctor operations are available.
Are MOOC classes also available in languages other than English?
Many international folks show keen interest in taking MOOC courses. Some MOOC sites do offer classes in foreign languages, but few. The two sites that offer translation of courses into foreign languages are Coursera and EdX.
What about the availability of classes on MOOC sites – do they cover a variety of topics?
The answer is that it varies. Many MOOC sites are dedicated to just one “school” of learning: for example a MOOC site that may offer courses focused on teaching, with the option to take a teaching certificate. However, there are also MOOC sites that operate more like a university with a larger variety of topics for study. The two MOOC sites with the largest course catalog are Coursera and EdX, though not all advertised course are always available.
There’s little doubt that MOOC will continue to evolve and grow globally. Those wishing to avoid large student debt in their early adulthood have used MOOC sites as a way to opt out of the traditional route and pave their own educational path. It’s only a matter of time before MOOC becomes a viable alternative to University education, although how this plays out will remain interesting as Universities up their game to protect their revenue streams.