What is the future for MOOCs in Italy?

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Francesca Pozzi
Grainne Conole


This paper describes the MOOC phenomenon and defines its concept, by considering the numerous variants that have emerged so far. The paper looks at the existing classifications and taxonomies, as they have been proposed in the literature, and highlights some drawbacks; it then proposes a classification of MOOCs based on 12 dimensions. Then the paper focuses on one specific country, namely Italy, who has not remained uninterested in this phenomenon: indeed MOOCs have started attracting a certain interest at both the academic and decision maker’s levels; besides, in this country some MOOC offerings have already been launched. The classification is used to analyze to exemplar courses run in Italy, and thus to reflect on the potential uptake of MOOCs in Italy: the paper discusses the kind of impact MOOCs could have on the Italian universities, by pointing out the main existing barriers, as well as the enablers, which may respectively prevent or encourage an immediate uptake of MOOCs in the country.

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