MOOCs impact: ITCILO explores learning analytics to boost engagement

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In December 2016 the ITCILO released a new report on Massive Open Online Courses for Development which builds on an extensive literature review and draws upon the internal expertise built by the Centre. The most controversial feature of MOOCs is probably low completion rates, typically around 7%. It’s easy to count certificates, but MOOCs are so much more! For this reason, the Centre is adopting a new approach based on Learning Analytics to assess participation with metrics that encompass all desirable learning activities, such as browsing and exploring, and not just completion. Building on its internal expertise, the Centre has developed a MOOCs4Dev Toolkit, which gives guidelines on the three phases of MOOCs rollout: design, implementation and evaluation.

learning analytics

From September to November 2016 the Centre launched its fifth MOOCs: the Crowdfunding MOOC for Caribbean Entrepreneurs, in partnership with the World Bank Group.

CMCE banner

The MOOC aimed to provide entrepreneurs with the knowledge and skills to use crowdfunding to test the market demand for their product or service and plan their own rewards or presale Crowdfunding campaign. The course registered 296 participants from countries belonging to the World Bank Group’s Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC). 57% of the selected applicants were female and 42% were male. This is in contrary to MOOCs statistics found in the literature, where female participation is typically lower than male participation. Furthermore, thanks to 2-step facilitation strategy the MOOC achieved a record-high completion rate of 19% with 57 Crowdfunding Campaign plans submitted by participants. One of them was already launched on Kickstarter and has not only reached but exceeded the crowdfunding target of CAD $8,000 with over 140 backers to expand Taste Tea Naturals, a social enterprise based in Antigua and Barbuda.

Kickstarter campaign

Together with the MOOCs4Dev Report, the CMCE contributed to building the growing expertise of the Centre in MOOCs4Dev. The course also received very positive feedback, with all participants saying they would recommend the course to a colleague.

“I want to sincerely thank the team for designing a great course. I have learnt more than I could have ever imagined. I have the tools necessary now to do my campaign […]. I am eternally grateful for what I have learnt on this online course and hope to be one of your greatest success stories.” CMCE participant


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