Both MOOCs and Textbooks Will End Up Courseware

From The Chronicle:

Textbook publishers argue that their newest digital products shouldn’t even be called “textbooks.” They’re really software programs built to deliver a mix of text, videos, and homework assignments. But delivering them is just the beginning. No old-school textbook was able to be customized for each student in the classroom. The books never graded the homework. And while they contain sample exam questions, they couldn’t administer the test themselves.

What’s happening right now is that xMOOCs are moving backwards into replicable content from the interaction and assessment pole while textbooks are  are moving forward into interaction and assessment from the replicable content pole.

The end result of this is not necessarily massive classes. It’s broadly used courseware — software that provides much of the skeleton of standard classes the way publisher texts do today. In other words, the best way to think of a MOOC isn’t really as a class brought to your doorstep — it’s more a textbook with ambitions.

This isn’t a trivial shift at all. It marks a shift from the class seen as an event to the class seen as a designed (and somewhat replicable) learning environment. It subverts traditional divisions of labor, and has the potential to radically change what we mean by education.  It will force us to understand the physical classroom as a learning environment as well (albeit a different one) much as the emergence of recorded music created the conception of live music.

But it’s not a new shift, either. It’s been quietly happening for quite a long time now. And after all the talk about first tier schools and massive class sizes burn off, we’ll be left with questions we’ve been asking for quite a long time now: What is courseware? What can it do/not do? What are its implications?

27 thoughts on “Both MOOCs and Textbooks Will End Up Courseware

  1. Pingback: Both MOOCs and Textbooks Will End Up Courseware « Mike Caulfield

  2. Mike, this is GREAT – courseware is a term that we could/should be using for just this reason. I’ve been telling people that MOOCs seem to me like textbooks, kind of noisy semi-social textbooks… but I will start saying courseware instead. Of course, that just opens up another conversation that we need to be having – courseware sounds like a good label / excuse for that conversation.🙂

  3. Pingback: ET al | Clyde Street

  4. Pingback: Maybe Colleges Should Worry Less About MOOCs and More About Textbook Companies? | Hapgood

  5. Pingback: Maybe Colleges Should Worry Less About MOOCs and More About Textbook Companies? « Mike Caulfield

  6. Pingback: More than a MOOC (and probably longer) | Interactive Technology and the University: Core II

  7. Pingback: » MOOCS II Philip Kreniske

  8. Pingback: What Impact Have MOOCs Had on Open Courseware?

  9. Pingback: Coursera, Chegg, and the Education Enclosure Movement

  10. Pingback: As we were saying… (Coursera as Provider of Courseware) | Hapgood

  11. Pingback: As we were saying… (Coursera as Provider of Courseware) | Mike Caulfield

  12. Pingback: What happens if you lose control of your own course? | More or Less Bunk

  13. Pingback: Coursera, Chegg, and the Education Enclosure Movement - The Digital Reader

  14. This isn’t a trivial shift at all. It marks a shift from the class seen as an event to the class seen as a designed (and somewhat replicable) learning environment. It subverts traditional divisions of labor, and has the potential to radically change what we mean by education. It will force us to understand the physical classroom as a learning environment as well (albeit a different one) much as the emergence of recorded music created the conception of live music. buy amazon reviews

  15. This isn’t a trivial shift at all. It marks a shift from the class seen as an event to the class seen as a designed (and somewhat replicable) learning environment. It subverts traditional divisions of labor, and has the potential to radically change what we mean by education. It will force us to understand the physical classroom as a learning environment as well (albeit a different one) much as the emergence of recorded music created the conception of live music. natural weightloss

  16. The end result of this is not necessarily massive classes. It’s broadly used courseware — software that provides much of the skeleton of standard classes the way publisher texts do seo singapore.

  17. Textbook publishers argue that their newest digital products shouldn’t even be called “textbooks.So – whose assessment of Moylan’s actions is “correct”? I try to answer that question HCG drops

  18. Hmm it appears like your blog ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any tips and hints for first-time blog writers? I’d genuinely appreciate it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s