"When massive open online courses (MOOCs) first grabbed the attention of major media outlets in 2011, bold claims were made about democratizing education and providing high-quality credentials at a fraction of the costs of traditional degrees. For a research center like ours that studies the cost-effectiveness of educational programs and strategies, MOOCs seemed too good to be true. The prospect of high-quality instruction being offered at mass scale sounded like the perfect candidate for cost-effective education. However, our investigations showed that while it was feasible to assess the cost side of the equation, the benefits were much harder to capture."—Source: EDUCAUSE Review
WHY THIS MATTERS:
Long story short, we won't see MOOCs replacing degrees anytime soon. The low-sgtakes, flexible MOOC model has major benefits for professional learners, but with low completion rates, questions about their value remain.