OER14 homeApplication › Mrs Terese Bird

MOOC taxonomy and pedagogy

Monday 13:00-14:00 (1), Mezzanine Balcony

Type: Fringe

Theme: MOOCs and open courses

http://www.menon.org/projects/emundus/ #oer14 #abs134


Mrs Terese Bird, Learning Technologist, University of Leicester, [email protected]
Professor Grainne Conole, Professor of Learning Innovation, University of Leicester, [email protected]


In the years since George Siemens’ connectivist MOOC (Siemens, 2012), many MOOCs and platforms have been developed. Some of the most well-known and most-subscribed-to (or at least most-registered-for) have come to be known as xMOOCs, often based on recorded lectures and machine-marked assessments. If the original Siemens MOOC was connectivist, what pedagogical approach are these xMOOCs based on? Are they similar in approach, or do they differ enough to warrant different classification? And most importantly, as MOOCs become more numerous, will learners become more savvy, more choosey, and will they select courses by features other than basic content? Should MOOCs be expected to be more upfront about the kind of pedagogical approach and other characteristics they will feature?

These questions inform one aspect of the EU-funded eMundus project (http://www.menon.org/projects/emundus), which aims to strengthen cooperation and awareness amongst EU and other strategic partners of ways to leverage the potential of MOOCs, virtual mobility, and other open educational practices to support long-term, balanced, inter-cultural partnerships. By sharing of knowledge, tools and practices around MOOCs, and their implications, the project wishes to help institutions, networks and policy makers to develop effective open educational strategies.

One such tool is a new classification of MOOCs (Conole, 2013) along with an attempt to choose MOOCs by overall pedagogical approach and then align them with the new classification, as discussed in a webinar for Open Education Week 2014 (Bird & Conole, 2014).

The fringe event opens this classification and pedagogical characterization to public scrutiny and to a chance for anyone curious to try them out. Each element of the MOOC classification is open to argument. Pick a MOOC, any MOOC – if you can’t choose one, we will have some possibilities ready for you -- and plot it on the 12-dimensional MOOC taxonomy chart. Sweets and treats round out the offer for those who give the taxonomy a try. All feedback, comments and suggestions will inform the eMundus project.


Bird, T., & Conole, G. (2014). A Pedagogical Look at MOOCs. A Pedagogical Look at MOOCS Webinar. Retrieved March 24, 2014, from http://www.openeducationweek.org/a-pedagogical-look-at-moocs/
Conole, G. (2013). A new classification for MOOCs. e4innovation Blog. Retrieved January 25, 2014, from http://www.e4innovation.com/?p=727
Siemens, G. (2012). MOOC MOOC | Home. Retrieved from http://www.moocmooc.com/

Funding acknowledgements

EACEA: Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency of the European Commission

Further details

Keywords: MOOC, virtual mobility, institutional partnership, international, accreditation

Website: http://www.menon.org/projects/emundus/

Mrs Terese Bird, Learning Technologist, University of Leicester

Twitter: @tbirdcymru

Twitter abstract: MOOC taxonomy and pedagogy: try the new 12-dimensional MOOC classification with #eMundus project!