For Stanford MOOC instructors, trial and error breeds success

Posted on February 15th, 2014

Faculty members at Stanford University say that as they run their MOOCs for the third or fourth time, their courses are “living up to (some of) the potential promised two years ago.” Keith Devlin, a Stanford researcher who recently launched the fourth iteration of his Introduction to Mathematical Thinking MOOC, said the number of students who persist through the first and second weeks has grown with every new version of the course. While the course content has remained more or less constant, Devlin has been able to fine-tune the structure of the MOOC, and the experience of taking it has become “radically different.” The most significant change “is that the course is now explicitly about participation, not about getting a good grade at the end.”