NovoED has redesigned its MOOC Team Home Pages injecting more currency and dynamic content into what previously was more of a decorative splash page.
Content & Form
Many MOOC students seem curious both about the specific content of their course, and also of the form and function of MOOC platforms more generally. I’ve found that Groups or Teams are one of the most powerful aspects of these “massive” courses. Groups can be a hassle and yours can disappear, but if you’re lucky enough to find a good one, it can dramatically amplify your experience.
MOOC Team Home Pages
Of the 4 MOOCs I’ve taken: 2 from Coursera and 1 each from NovoED and Iversity, this Practice Based Research in the Arts MOOC from NovoED is the only one that’s had teams. And apparently, NovoED has redesigned the team home pages. The old page was more of a splash page, with a bit of info and links for each team member. The new one is more active, with a What did you learn today? prompt, the list of team members, a reverse-chron feed of team posts, and something I’d never even seen before, a list of team followers.
A sample size of only 4 MOOCs is too small to say anything definitive, yet with the little info I have, it seems that NovoED, or at least this NovoED course, is the leader in MOOC Team support. Coursera and Iversity are both great platforms, but on both it is hard to contact your classmates and build community. At an F2F university you might visit faculty office hours, you might run in to other students in other classes or at the student union, etc. In a “massive” MOOC these sorts of interactions aren’t really feasible, or “don’t scale.” Therefore making it easy to find, learn about, and interact with classmates is essential. Teams are a great way to do this. The “new” (to me) Team Follow Feature is another small way NovoED seems to be expanding the value of and access to MOOC Teams.
• “Blueberry Blintz” MOOC Team home page on NovoED: novoed.com/pbr/teams/69213