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Brief interventions help online learners persist with coursework, Stanford research finds

Stanford Online Screenshot
Jan 19 2017
Fellow, Research, Stanford

New research shows people in underdeveloped parts of the world are not as likely to complete massive open online courses, or MOOCs. But small psychological activities could help motivate them, closing the global achievement gap.

Millions of people have taken free massive open online courses, or MOOCs, which have been touted as democratizing access to educational opportunities around the world. But whether learners are likely to succeed in a MOOC largely depends on where they live, according to new Stanford-led research.

A study, published in the Jan. 20 issue of Science, found that people in less-developed countries are completing MOOCs at a lower rate than those in the more developed parts of the world.

Lead author René Kizilcec is a SPICE funding recipient and a 2014 Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow (Anonymous Donor), Communication.