Understanding Learners’ motivation and learning strategies in MOOCs


I am glad to announce that the paper “Understanding Learners’ motivation and learning strategies in MOOCs” I was invited to participate by the Dr. Carlos Alario-Hoyos has been accepted for publication. It presents a study conducted in a MOOC on Java programming with 6335. The paper points out that time management is one of the main issues that learners in MOOCs have more difficulties to deal with.

We, at the UC, are working on an web application to solve this based on visualization and social comparison. Hopefully, our first trial is going to be this next March, so we will let you know how it works. It looks like the 2017 is going to be the year of self-regulated learning in MOOCs.

Alario-Hoyos, C., Estévez-Ayres, I, Pérez-Sanagustín, M., Delgado Kloos, C., Fernández-Panadero, C., (Accepted). Understanding Learners’ motivation and learning strategies in MOOCs,  International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning (IRRODL). JCR-SSCI, Q2, Impact Factor: 1.244.

Here you have the abstract.

MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) have changed the way in which OERs (Open Educational Resources) are bundled by teachers and consumed by learners. MOOCs represent an evolution towards the production and offering of structured quality OERs. Many institutions that were initially reluctant to providing OERs have, however, joined the MOOC wave. Nevertheless, MOOCs detractors strongly criticize their high dropout rates. The dropout rate is a commonly accepted metric of success for traditional education, but it may not be as suitable when dealing with OERs, in general, and with MOOCs, in particular, since learners’ motivations to take a course are very diverse, and certain self-regulated learning strategies are required to tackle the lack of personalized tutoring and keep pace in the course. This paper presents an empirical study on the motivation and learning strategies of MOOC learners. 6335 learners from 160 countries answered a self-report 7-point Likert-type questionnaire based on the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ) as part of a MOOC on Introduction to Programming with Java. Results indicate that learners were highly motivated and confident to do well in the course. Learning strategies, however, can be improved, especially regarding time management.