Fifteen more schools to run MOOCs with Blackboard

Lauren Williams's picture
Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Blackboard Inc. today announced that 15 more higher education institutions have elected to run massive open online courses (“MOOCs”) on the company’s free, flexible teaching and learning platform, marking a significant expansion in the number of schools that have partnered with Blackboard for MOOCs.

The majority of MOOCs will run this summer and fall and will be free of charge. Two of the institutions – Edge Hill University and Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies – will offer credit to participating students.

By partnering with Blackboard, the institutions will retain full control over the form and direction of their MOOCs. The schools will use Blackboard’s platform for free in a non-exclusive and non-binding manner. In addition, the institutions will retain full control of all current and future revenue associated with MOOCs that are offered for-pay or for-credit.

Decision makers at these institutions cited the platform’s ease of use, depth of functionality and free support and guidance as reasons for partnering with the company. Many of the schools looked at other platforms before choosing Blackboard.

The list of schools that will partner with Blackboard to offer MOOCs this summer and fall are:

  • Ashland University, two MOOCs during the 2013-2014 academic year
  • Edge Hill University, on vampire fictions
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University—Worldwide, on psychological and physiological elements contributing to aviation accidents
  • Genesee Community College, as part of an Internet scavenger hunt
  • Montgomery College, a college-level English preparatory course
  • National University of Ireland Galway, on planning change and innovation
  • Northern Illinois University, called “Perspectives on Disability”
  • Pace University, on the basics of GIS
  • Paine College, an introduction to Lean Six Sigma
  • Rogers State University, on sociocultural systems
  • Rollins College, on financial accounting
  • Stevenson University, on forensic science
  • Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies, one MOOC called “New Librarianship, the Master Class,” and one MOOC on Data Science with R
  • Temple University’s Fox School of Business, on quantitative methods for business
  • University of Massachusetts Boston, on coastal environmental science

“When it came to choosing a platform, we looked at all the different systems out there before choosing to work with Blackboard,” said Peggy Brown, director, instructional design at Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies. “The platform’s ease of use, system uptime—and this was the most important factor for us—excellent customer service and support made this an easy decision.”

“One of the reasons we chose to work with Blackboard to run our MOOC on disability was the platform’s recognition of accessibility,” said Stephanie Richter, instructional technologies coordinator at NIU. “It is very important to us that the platform itself embodies the ideals of the course, and that course navigation and content is accessible to everyone.”

To date, dozens of institutions have partnered with Blackboard to run MOOCs on the company’s platforms including Blackboard Learn and CourseSites. To see a full list of MOOCs on Blackboard platforms, visit the Blackboard MOOC Catalog at http://www.coursesites.com/mooccatalog.