From Today’s Hatchet: Professor Soltan on MOOCs

Professor Margaret Soltan is among those interviewed in today’s GW Hatchet, on the topic of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses):
“GW is on the verge of joining an online education revolution, following in the footsteps of elite universities that have over the past year launched hundreds of free online classes – open to anyone with computer access.
Photo by Tamara Trocki
The massive open online courses, or MOOCs, include videos and slides on topics ranging from philosophy to nutrition, and have elicited tens of thousands of sign-ups from around the world. Despite universal uncertainties about their financial stability and academic quality, the University is making headway on a slow rollout of the non-credit courses that would serve as GW’s first MOOCs, a top official said last week….
One GW professor, associate professor of English Margaret Soltan, has tackled MOOCs independently. She already teaches a course on poetry through the Faculty Project at Udemy, winning considerable exposure on account of the course, including a profile in the Chronicle of Higher Education and a request to speak at Harvard University.
But the exposure comes without direct financial gain.
‘It’s all a rather shaky proposition – if money is your aim,’ Soltan said. ‘If getting your university’s name out there in the world in a big way is a motivation, and if doing some good in the world is a motivation, MOOCs are a very good way to go.'”

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