What can MOOCs do for us in HE? some experiences from the school of law

Suzy Houston, Christian Tams

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


The term ‘MOOC’ (Massive Open Online Course) has been echoing around university campuses in the UK since 2011, which, in technology terms, is a long time. MOOCs have been hailed as the future of education, but according to some commentators we are already ‘post-MOOC’. During 2013-2014, the University of Glasgow has delivered three MOOCs. We have been involved in two of them. In our presentation, we aim to discuss: - whether MOOCs are a suitable way of widening participation in University teaching, - how they can be developed and delivered; - whether/how they can be linked with traditional forms of classroom teaching in forms of ‘blended learning’ so to enhance student experience; - whether they can contribute to the University’s aim of fostering ‘excellence in teaching’ as defined in the L&T Strategy. In assessing these questions, we will draw on first-hand experience of the development and delivery of two MOOCs (each attracting between 5000 and 10,000 sign-ups), developed in partnership with the online platform FutureLearn (one of these produced in collaboration with the BBC). We will report on, and examine, our MOOC projects from initial development to live delivery, taking account of various viewpoints, including those of the professorial ‘educators’, the graduate ‘mentors’, the e-learning support staff and (using survey data) the learners. We provide insight into some of the main successes of each project, as well as any potential barriers to success and how we attempted to overcome them. The main purpose is to share lessons learned in the pilot phase of the University of Glasgow’s “MOOC experience”. We thereby hope to help colleagues/ delegates to reach informed decisions about whether, how and where to engage with forms of online learning.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Apr 2015
Event8th Annual University of Glasgow Learning and Teaching Conference: Learning and Teaching in a Changing Environment - University of Glasgow, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 14 Apr 201514 Apr 2015
Conference number: 8


Conference8th Annual University of Glasgow Learning and Teaching Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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