Widening disabled learners’ participation to HE through the use of MOOCs

Iniesto, Francisco; McAndrew, Patrick; Minocha, Shailey and Coughlan, Tim (2018). Widening disabled learners’ participation to HE through the use of MOOCs. In: Widening Participation Conference: Is widening participation to higher education enough?, 26-28 Apr 2018, Milton Keynes, pp. 31–34.

URL: http://www.open.ac.uk/about/wideningparticipation/...


Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) are making low-cost learning opportunities available at a large scale to diverse groups of learners. Therefore, MOOCs need to be accessible so that they can offer the flexibility of learning and benefits to all. To direct efforts towards developing accessible MOOCs, it is important to understand the current motivations of disabled learners. Analysis of data from existing MOOC surveys that request disclosure of disability provides quantitative information such as the proportions of disabled learners participating in MOOCs; their reasons for participating, and the types of MOOCs they prefer. Interviews from selected participants for this research, capture in-depth the experiences and motivations of disabled learners while participating in them. This paper outlines the interests that disabled learners who have experience participating in MOOCs have in studying Higher Education (HE) programmes, and the possibilities MOOCs offer them as vehicles to complement or offer alternative paths to their HE studies.

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