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MOOC vs. Coursework Certificates? The MIT Idea

It's making the rounds in the news that MIT is trying a MOOC-delivered certificate program that will help facilitate entry into the Supply Chain Management master's program there.  http://www.wsj.com/articles/mit-to-add-micro-masters-program-for-supply-chain-management-1444245905

I'm just curious about everyone's thoughts about this approach.  I'm not entirely on board with the MOOC concept yet, and completion rates tend to be very poor.  Having recently completed a coursework-based certificate at HES I also wonder how much of the real academic experience you get with a MOOC versus the live interaction with a faculty member and fellow students.  It's definitely interesting and I thought it might be good for some discussion here.

Comments

  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    edited December 2015
    I just saw this thread while looking for something i posted and now need.
    I have two comments. To,save money i might do mooc courses. For cs, i think as long as you have homework you will learn
    I also wondered if a cs background relates to supply chain management. Is that crazy?
    Ive wondered this before. Seems like transferrable skills?
  • @nancymic I would think that you'd have some good transfer of skills with logic, math, and programming. A great deal of advanced SCM involves analytics, which is obviously driven by advanced software and simulation programming. Some business fundamentals just to understand the vocabulary and the relationships of the players would certainly help, but I think a CS major could be a natural fit for SCM work.
  • jcaudill said:

    I'm just curious about everyone's thoughts about this approach.  I'm not entirely on board with the MOOC concept yet, and completion rates tend to be very poor.

    Has anyone taken Stanford's Online courses? Stanford appears to offer an online degree, but I'm more interested in their certificate program, particulary the Standford Advanced Computer Security Certificate.

  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    @onlymybest Thanks for the Stanford link. It looks great!
    @jcaudill i wanted to comment on your poor completion rates comment. If you complete the program, you do not have to worry about rates:)
    But seriously, for 2 years I worked for an education org and one big takeaway was that free or very inexpensive programs did have lower completion rates. No huge commitment, so...

    Plus i have "signed up" for a bunch of free coursera and udemy courses just to watch a bunch of lectures with no intention at the moment of completing anything...more to clarify things or to get a taste of the work that would be involved.

    Most recently it has been computer networking, mostly to help my uderstanding at work without the pressure of grades etc.
  • @nancymic - Good points and thanks for sharing your experiences. I suspect that MOOCs have a similar but magnified effect of online education. Generally online programs have lower retention and completion rates than traditional programs, but the students who are successful in online programs tend to be more focused and more dedicated than average. In the wide open environment of a MOOC it would certainly take much more than average commitment to the course, and then of course there are those who access them strictly to get some information without the intention of completing. Great discussion!
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    Here is a coursera program in cyber security that could help in preparing for a stanford certificatehttps://www.coursera.org/specializations/cybersecurity?utm_medium=courseDescripTop
    I like to know what I am getting into :)
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    edited January 2016
    We should get a group together to take the cyber security certificate at Stanford. I like that it is inexpensive, it is Stanford :), and it is useful to me at work.
    ...but I have to wait until May
  • I agree with waiting until May but would like to go through the Stanford certificate. Having some HES colleagues along for the ride would be a big bonus. I'm trying to focus on refreshing my technical skills as part of my professional development plan in the near future (once upon a time I was a sysadmin) and security is definitely at the top of the list of things to consider today. Let's be sure to revisit this later in the spring and see what might come together.
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    Sounds great!
  • nancymic said:

    We should get a group together to take the cyber security certificate at Stanford. I like that it is inexpensive, it is Stanford :), and it is useful to me at work.
    ...but I have to wait until May

    Good idea!

  • GratGrat Posts: 264
    Just curious - why not the security certificate at HES?
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    edited January 2016
    @grat For me i would say price. I'm paying for college for two kids!
    Wanna join? Oh, by the way i will be in the front end/mobile class.
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    Ah so I see there are three of us so far. @grat now you have to join
  • GratGrat Posts: 264
    It sounds like fun - maybe :smiley:
  • onlymybestonlymybest Posts: 37
    edited February 2016
    Here is a link to a small review of the Stanford Advanced Computer Security Certificate
  • nancymicnancymic Posts: 185
    edited February 2016
    That's helpful. I wondered what was meant by a course. I still don't know if they are equivalent to a 3 or 4-credit course, but they didn't seem to be.
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