Investigating Different Types of Assessment in Massive Open Online Courses

Tina Papathoma
The current technological era has largely influenced the development of learning environments. As a result, there are new opportunities for teaching, learning and assessment. The emergence of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) in particular, has attracted the attention of higher education institutions and course designers. MOOCs may provide the opportunity to thousands of students to learn from anywhere and at their convenience. Assessment is a component of the learning environment that drives
more » ... ronment that drives student learning. However, only a small proportion of existing literature on assessment investigates its use for the enhancement of educational growth as most of the literature is concerned with how to use assessment for purposes of grading and ranking (Rowntree, 1987). Assessment has a double role in learning by both motivating students to study in order to undertake it, but also providing the necessary feedback on their performance so that students can track their learning progress (Rowntree, 1987). Research in MOOCs is currently growing, focusing on different aspects such as the "questionable course quality, high dropout rate, unavailable course credits, complex copyright, limited hardware and ineffective assessments" (Chen, 2014). Assessment in MOOCs has been mostly investigated from a perspective that is looking at: how the grading load can be diminished by adopting automated techniques, the aims of each technique, and finally new potential approaches that will be able to assess high-level cognition. Summing up, researchers are currently testing tools that will be automatically scoring essays and giving feedback to learners in an effective way (see Balfour, 2013). However, the learners' voice and standpoint about the different assessment types in the MOOCs context is inconclusive in the current literature and there is need for more research. This study explores learners' views on assessment types in Massive Open Online Courses, whether any of these has an impact on their enrolment and completion of a course and in wha [...]
doi:10.21954/ fatcat:gjstbt5gsrbvhk7dhkoswwy2hm