Are MOOC learning designs culturally inclusive (enough)?

Rizvi, Saman; Rienties, Bart; Rogaten, Jekaterina and Kizilcec, René F. (2023). Are MOOC learning designs culturally inclusive (enough)? Journal of Computer Assisted Learning [Early Access].



Background Extensive research on massive open online courses (MOOCs) has focused on analysing learners' behavioural trace data to understand navigation and activity patterns, which are known to vary systematically across geo-cultural contexts. However, the perception of learners regarding the role of different learning design elements in sustaining their engagement in the course is still unclear.
Objectives This study aimed to examine learners' perception of learning design elements in MOOCs and explore the ways in which these perceptions differ between geo-cultural contexts.
Methods We conducted interviews with 22 learners from seven geo-cultural regions to gather insights into their learning design preferences.
Results Our findings indicate that learners from regions such as South Asia exhibit a strong inclination towards video-based content and a lesser preference for reading textual resources. In contrast, learners from regions such as Anglo-Saxon demonstrate a high preference for reading texts such as articles and video transcripts.
Conclusion The observed variations in self-reported interests in various learning design elements raise intriguing questions about the nature and extent of participation of various geo-cultural groups. This study underscores the need to develop inclusive MOOC designs and implement learning analytics approaches that adapt to the cultural preferences of learners.

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