Book Review: MOOC Yourself (@Ignatia) #MOOCyourself

MOOC YourSelf - Set up your own MOOC for Business, Non-Profits, and Informal CommunitiesThis is the first book on MOOCs I’ve been inclined to read, purely because Igne Ignatia de Waard (@Ignatia) is someone I respect through our shared interest and conversations on Twitter – “MOOC YourSelf – Set up your own MOOC for Business, Non-Profits, and Informal Communities”.

Self-published through the Amazon Direct Publishing process Ignatia looks at the different options/formats for MOOCs and fits them in to best online learning practices and offers design and learning options. In the book she also looks at the pedagogy surrounding MOOCs and the options currently available for the often-criticised certification routes.

“The challenges and benefits of MOOCs are highlighted and guidelines on how to build an optimal MOOC experience are shared. Online learning best practices’ are listed with a focus on MOOC specific learning characteristics, certification options and pedagogies.”

The background and history to the current MOOC hype(first section of the book) is not for me, but it is worth reading as the basis for the cMOOC and xMOOC approach are explained well and are vital if you are to get the most out of the rest of the book. The carefully written book is well targeted towards educators, at all levels, who are interested in the MOOC phenomenon and want to investigate developing and writing for a MOOC, for business or personal interest. The rest of the book highlights the more practical elements of your MOOC that needs careful consideration: copyright, costs, moderation, length, etc.

All in all I think this is a good introduction to MOOCs in general, but a valuable resource if you are thinking about becoming involved in writing for or running a MOOC, and well worth the (current, as of July 22) $2.99 / £2.01 cover price.

I shared some quotes on Twitter – using the #MOOCyourself hashtag – from the Kindle App of which the following from the book are worth repeating:

“… learning can start from commonly shared content that soon diversifies, to fit the learning to the personal learning needs. This results in the learner taking control of her/his own learning.”

“The course puts forward information and content links as an optional starting point for all the participants to build upon: adding their own resources and produce additional, contextualized content. As such it is within the hands of the participants and organizers of a MOOC to adapt it to the needs and the goals participants want to attain.”

“As the MOOC proceeds some MOOC participants can get tired of the constant overload so make sure you also provide some days off, especially if your course is longer than three weeks!”

“Starting a MOOC is relatively easy, but going through it is a challenge to even the most experienced of MOOCers. Nevertheless if you can find the time to organize a MOOC, make it happen. It is a great learning experience for all and it will inspire everyone.”

You can view all quotes that have been shared by myself and other readers on the MOOC Yourself book via the Kindle Amazon website.