Mooc and Inequality in Society: The Chance to Overcome Inequality or Transfer It into Online Environment

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 09:30
Oral Presentation
Tatiana SEMENOVA, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russian Federation
There are different and at the same time opposite points of view about massive open online courses (MOOCs). Some researchers believe that MOOC is a way to break national borders and expand democracy among developing countries as well as a means to overcome inequality [Jewitt, 2017]. Since this is an open source of knowledge for everyone despite race, gender, socio-economic status, educational background etc. Nevertheless studies have shown that the majority of MOOC participants are citizens of developed countries with higher education [Hansen, Reich, 2015; Kizilcec et al., 2017]. That is why other researchers consider MOOC as a means of supporting and increasing inequality in society. In our research, we determine firstly whether MOOC participants have an equal chance of successfully completing the course, and secondly, to what extent achievements of MOOC students may be predicted at the start of the course (when researcher has only survey data on socio-demographic, psychological characteristics of students and data on reasons for choosing the course). We use clickstream and survey data gathered from participants of MOOCs offered by National Research University Higher School of Economics on the National Open Education Platform from 2015 to 2017. The results of our research show that students have unequal chances of successfully completing the MOOC at the start of the course.