Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS): Emerging Trends in Assessment and Accreditation
Keywords:MOOCs, automated assessments, smart systems, automated grading, automated feedback, learning and achievement, assessment and evaluation
In 2014, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are expected to witness a phenomenal growth in student registration compared to the previous years (Lee, Stewart, & Claugar-Pop, 2014). As MOOCs continue to grow in number, there has been an increasing focus on assessment and evaluation. Because of the huge enrollments in a MOOC, it is impossible for the instructor to grade homework and evaluate each student. The enormous data generated by learners in a MOOC can be used for developing and refining automated assessment techniques. As a result, “Smart Systems” are being designed to track and predict learner behavior while completing MOOC assessments. These automated assessments for MOOCs can automatically score and provide feedback to students multiple choice questions, mathematical problems and essays. Automated assessments help teachers with grading and also support students in the learning processes. Theseassessments are prompt, consistent, and support objectivity in assessment and evaluation (Ala-Mutka, 2005). This paper reviews the emerging trends in MOOC assessments and their application in supporting student learning and achievement. The paper concludes by describing how assessment techniques in MOOCs can help to maximize learning outcomes.
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