What are MOOCs?
A MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) is a free, massive, open, online course, that aims to share and spread knowledge on the basis of the material that teachers upload to the web as well as the debates that arise in global classrooms.
Among other criteria, these courses have to be 4-12 weeks long, be organized in at least four modules and involve no more than three hours of suggested weekly dedication by the students. Every module is assessed on the basis of the audiovisual material uploaded by the teacher and, eventually, students can apply for a certificate of their participation and attendance.
Spanish universities are joining the trend of MOOCs, a new educational concept born in the United States, where prestigious universities such as Harvard, Stanford or the MIT offer free, massive, online courses. There is no limit for student registration and downloadable materials are free, open and available via different internet platforms such as FutureLearn, Coursera, MiríadaX, UCatX or edX.
In short, MOOCs are part of UPF’s commitment to the use of multimedia tools applied to teaching. This project was supported by the Center for Learning Innovation and Knowledge (CLIK) and different agents of the University have subsequently joined, including people responsible for the application of new technologies for learning, La Factoria, audiovisual technicians and translators, to build a multidisciplinary team with the mission of producing quality and innovative MOOCs.
The fact that in 2013 UPF was one of the firsts Catalan universities to offer MOOCs reflects the University’s interest in this kind of education. The first courses were Descodificando Álgebra, by professor Daza from the Polytechnic School (which is already in its 4th edition), and Innotools: Transforma Tu Idea de Negocio, by professor Buil from Tecnocampus in Mataró (which finished its 5th edition in May). Every year, UPF updates its MOOC catalogue and offers new editions of courses that have already been given.
Further information on MOOCs at UPF: