Understanding student demographic factors might help us teach a new generation of learners how to succeed in MOOCs

mooc-experimentAn important technique for understanding what might really be happening in the world is to avoid being bowled over by stunning numbers.

For instance, when Massive Open Online Courses (or MOOCs - free classes offered by some of the world's best-known colleges and universities) first made news, stories celebrating them as the solution to the planet's educational ills focused on huge enrollments in the tens or even hundreds of thousands.

But soon critics of this new learning...

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