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MOOCs and Their Relevance to Corporate E-learning

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The first time I heard about MOOCs was when a colleague shared an article written for maritime professionals. MOOCs stands for Massive, Open, Online Courses. You can learn more about it in an article published in online version of Stanford magazine.

Universities such as Stanford, Harvard and MIT have begun to offer free courses for anyone who is interested in the program. While the individuals may not get any university credits for these courses, they have the fortune of learning directly from professors of these prestigious institutions, get a taste of how they function and gain knowledge directly from the masters.

EdX, a not for profit venture of MIT and Harvard, has already announced courses for this fall with an aim to reach out to as many students as possible across the globe. At first I brushed it aside thinking it was a university affair and not really relevant to the corporate world. However, further reading had me wondering – can large corporates who have employees & customers across the globe use similar medium such as MOOCs for education?

MOOC’s relevance to large organizations

  • Employees can enroll into relevant MOOCs offered by universities for continued learning; very valuable for employee skills development and lifelong learning according to an article by Business week. For example, a course on “Quantitative Methods in Clinical and Public Health Research” offered by EdX could benefit employees working in health care industry.
  • Corporates could tie up with the university to sponsor a course that is relevant to their employees. This certification (with a reputed university tag) certainly holds attractive value for employees and corporates alike.
  • Another possibility is to use this technology as a recruiting tool for large organizations. Organizations could develop their own curriculum and offer jobs to the top performing individuals enrolled in the program. It could prove to be a smart move to attract talent.

The revolution of creating low cost, high quality education has just begun and would be an interesting trend to track. Do you agree? Do you think MOOCs have a place in corporate eLearning environment? Do share your thoughts on the same.

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