Credit for MOOCs? Not so much

For all the consternation surrounding college credits offered for massive open online courses (MOOCs), there doesn’t seem to be a winding line of campus decision makers ready to adopt for-credit MOOCs.

Very few schools feel pressure to offer MOOCs for credit.

A comprehensive survey of U.S. higher education institutions showed that 7.8 percent of colleges and universities have offered the experimental MOOCs for college credit.

The survey, released in October by Primary Research Group, said that none of the institutions that awarded credit for MOOCs were community colleges. Most schools that award MOOC credits were private institutions, according to the survey.

Responses about credit-bearing MOOCs varied from school to school, according to the research.

“The responses suggest that a minority of colleges might be looking to accept MOOC credit in the near future if some kind of reassuring mechanism could be devised to assess knowledge gained through MOOCs and if the colleges feel sufficient pressure from state governments, accreditation bodies, and even the general student public,” the Primary Research Group report said.

The American Council on Education (ACE) has deemed only five MOOCs as credit worthy.

College faculty and others skeptical of MOOCs as a viable option for colleges and universities might be encouraged to learn that 8 percent of survey respondents said they “felt pressure” to adopt credit-bearing MOOCs.

Private colleges were more likely to feel that pressure than their public counterparts.

See page 2 for more on the main barriers to credit-bearing MOOCs…

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