Mixing MOOCS and modules

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsInvited talkTeaching


This paper takes as a starting point one of Philip Schrag's views of the future of law schools; that one of the only paths for survival is by “incorporating MOOCs” into their offering, by blending the delivery and using MOOCs for information delivery and live teachers for face-to-face sessions. The paper argues that as HEIs move toward blended learning, the starting point, however, is generally the traditional lecture and seminar module, with additional online resources and some online assessment. Stephenson wrote that “Experience has long been considered the best teacher of knowledge. Since we cannot experience everything, other people's experiences, and hence other people, become the surrogate for knowledge” and Siemens also said that connectivism has implications for the design of learning environments. This paper suggests that the use of MOOC elements accessible to students and non-students can help to incorporate elements of connectivism more directly into law teaching. The author co-developed an International Law MOOC in 2013/14, and this was deconstructed and evaluated by existing final year undergraduate law students, who were asked to judge the attraction, perceived usefulness, suitability for existing modules, and levelness of each element. Their responses are being used to design cMOOC-style elements within the final year of undergraduate law modules that are open to both students and non-students, and will allow all participants to interact. The paper concludes that Schrag’s view, while perhaps a little apocalyptic in nature, is nonetheless an extremely useful starting point for the future of delivering legal education.
Period2 Sept 2015
Event titleSociety of Legal Scholars Annual Conference
Event typeConference