Looking at MOOCs


Building communities to use the HandsOn ICT training environment

All the consortium partners in the HandsOn project have a strategic interest in developing the digital for use in their own teaching and teacher training activities. In this context, MirandaNet Fellows invited teachers and teacher educators running a range of professional networks who were interested in piloting the HandsOn environment in their future ICT training activities.
On May 28th the MirandaNet partners in the HandsOn project held a meeting in London of those members and associates in England who were interested in supporting the project. The discussions were organised around methods of increasing the dissemination opportunities for HandsOn during and after the project as well as strategies for supporting and growing the communities of practice who would use the environment during the pilot and sustaining them after the end of funding.

What is a MOOC?

When Dr Chris Yapp opened the meeting by talking about the pedagogy in MOOCs  and about the plans for mentoring that will help teachers, students and workers can undertake effective learning. In the first place he defined the term,Massive Open Online Course   A MOOC is a course or unit accessible, usually with no prerequisites, to anyone who wishes to enrol, usually for free, and with self-assessment or peer assessment along the way. Many now are being offered by recognised universities who may not credit towards a degree or award certificates of participation, or even a grade

Most MOOCs are delivered by acknowledged experts and outstanding teachers. They are very new, and no-one yet knows what they will mean or what role they will play. But many already believe that Pandora’s box has been opened.  Dr Chris Yapp explained to  the MirandaNet members and associates who are supporting the new EU Handson Project that considering the impact of changing pedagogy is more important than modifying platforms and generating  outreach. He said that the schools, colleges and universities that were represented there had a marvellous opportunity with HandsOn to articulate the learning philosophy of their own institution and contribute to making the HandsOn environment pedagogically innovative and exciting.


  • How MOOCS will impact on the future of learning

Further resources

You can read more about actions that were suggested and ideas  that were generated here
The participants also created a collaborative digital map based on De Bono’s Creative thinking hats exercise which is here.

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