Rethinking A Framework for Contextualising and Collaborating in MOOCs by Higher Education Institutions in Africa
Keywords:connectivism, contextualisation, higher education, MOOCs, Sub-Saharan Africa, online learning
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are online courses that are open to anyone with Internet access. Pioneered in North America, they were developed for contexts with broader access to technology and wider access to the Internet. As globally networked learning environments (GNLEs), MOOCs foster collaborative communities and learning in ways not conceived as feasible until recently. The affordances of MOOCs, such as the ability to access learning beyond one’s immediacy, exemplify their benefits for open and distance learning, especially in developing countries that continue to consume rather than produce online courses. However, the globality of MOOCs and their delivery mode pose a challenge of contextualising learning content to the local needs of educational institutions or individual students that choose to use the courses. This theoretical paper used a desk-research approach by revising literature to investigate and propose ways of contextualising MOOCs to the African higher education setting. It applied the principles of reuse and repurposing learning content, while suggesting the use of mobile learning as a technological delivery solution that is relevant to the local context. The paper also suggests a framework for inter-institutional collaboration for higher education institutions to guide future efforts in the creation and sharing of credit-bearing MOOCs.
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