The popularity of MOOCs is definitely growing in leaps and bounds as they are proving to be beneficial for thousands of students around the world who can’t afford traditional education. MOOCs are free and students don’t need to spend money on books as most of the course material is owned by the professors who teach the courses. The students who enrol in MOOCs are taught by some of the finest professors in the world. These courses enable people to continue their studies throughout life.
However, it has been noticed that many students, who have enrolled for these courses, are dropping out without completing them. The main problems that have been identified are
- Loss of interest
- Isolation or loneliness
- Lack of effectiveness
Recently, the dropout rates, of students who study in MOOCs, have drastically decreased as many professors, students and the hosting sites of MOOCs have come together to create a platform that will help out students losing interest. Meet-ups are being arranged by students and professors to create a community or discussion group, so that students feel more at ease studying. This is one of the best solutions to a problem like ‘dropping out’.
What exactly is a Meet-up?
A Meet-up is a community or discussion group, formed by students of MOOCs, for the likeminded to discuss various study related problems and clear doubts. A Meet-up, also helps individuals share ideas and thoughts, and gives them a feeling of studying in a traditional college.
Helps connect entrepreneurs and tech workers
Many of the people taking up MOOC courses are technology lovers who work in IT or for start ups and later want to work in these sectors. MOOC meet-ups help form a brilliant network.
Meet-ups do away with the feeling of loneliness or isolation
One of the main things that is criticised about online study, is the feeling of loneliness or isolation the students suffer from. However, Meet-ups are the perfect solution to such problems. As the student feels lonely while studying online, they feel ‘left-out’ and ‘neglected’ and eventually dropout. But with Meet-ups, they can physically get together with other students who have taken the same course, to talk about the problems they have encountered or just to share ideas on how they can do better in their courses.
Huge numbers all over the world are being benefitted by Meet-ups. Here a few figures:
From across 2,651 cities around the world, 30,825 students of Coursera have formed groups and communities that will make studying more interesting and a better experience.
From across 573 cities around the world, 4,508 students of Udacity, come together to hang out, study, exchange ideas, discuss course related problems. They also help each other clear doubts.
Few other benefits of Meet-ups:
- Meet-ups are also a great way of monitoring the courses of MOOCs and the exams
- Learners can also team up and work on physical projects
- These Meet-up groups bring together interested learners who have a sense of self direction
- These Meet-ups can form an environment inductive to specialised and personalised learning
Basically, Meet-ups will lend a personal and ‘human’ touch to the otherwise, virtual learning course, and is probably one of the best ways to prevent students from dropping out.