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MOOCs: The Answer to Students Who Don’t Know What Course to Choose

Published by Afterschool.my on Apr 19, 2017, 12:51 pm

It’s become a tale as old as time, when students never really know what to choose having completed their SPM. Sure, some courses seem enticing on the surface of it, but only once students enrol in a certain course will they truly find out if it’s something that they like. While some students are lucky and have done enough research to know exactly what to expect, many go in blind and eventually feel distraught at their choice, regretting and wishing they could turn back time and alter their decision to that of a different course.

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There are many Massive Open Online Courses or MOOCs that students can choose from

The answer many students have been hoping for comes in the form of Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs for short. What are MOOCs? Massive open online courses allow prospective students to gauge their interest in different courses at NO COST. MOOCs can generally be accessed by anyone with internet for FREE, although now there’s often an option to pay for a verified certificate of completion. This latter part was introduced after MOOCs were criticised for having a low completion rate. Companies such as Coursera and edX create MOOCs in collaboration with various universities, including some Ivy League universities such as Harvard.

MOOCs for Potential University Students

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MOOCs can be accessed online for free but there are some that require you to pay for a certificate for completion

So, let’s say you completed your SPM or will do so in the very near future. The clock is already ticking, and while you know you’ll do well, you are so worried as you have no certainties about your long-term goals. You’re torn between 2 or 3 courses. Maybe you have a slight interest in one course, but are worried to commit to it out of fear of not liking it or not doing well in it. Well, MOOCs are a great way for students to get a high-level view of a course or subject that they feel they might be interested in pursuing. Committing to a course, only to realise you are not interested or passionate about the discipline would be a terrible predicament for a college student, something which has become an all too familiar situation for many. With MOOCs, you can essentially sample a wide range of subjects before deciding to commit to the one you genuinely see a future with. It’s like a free taste test you see at supermarkets, except, instead of various flavours of ice-cream, you’ll be sampling different potential futures.

MOOCs for Current University Students

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MOOCs can give you the freedom of pursuing your studies while fulfilling your passions

For many students who have a passion that perhaps, burns brighter than that particular industry’s future, MOOCs can be a brilliant option. The course related to your passion may not have a high demand, or a large job-scope, so as such, you push it to the back-burner. With MOOCs, you can explore and nourish your passion on your own time while pursuing your chosen course at university, effectively killing two birds with one stone. Regardless of whether it’s potential career path, you will be able to feel fulfilled knowing you got to study a course with a good future without having to expunge your passion, regardless of whether it’s a potential career path.

MOOCs for Graduates

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The flexibility of MOOCs allow individuals to expand their knowledge in various topics

MOOCs also appeals to many in the work industry who have already completed their courses and currently practice their art. For example, an engineer currently employed may lack some skills in the technical portion of subset. A sales person who doesn’t have much knowledge with IT. An IT person may lack knowledge in Virtual Reality (VR). All these individuals don’t necessarily have to take up these skills, but it would help them move up the ladder faster and potentially altering their lives. I have turned to MOOCs to learn more about specific programming languages and similar topics. The flexible and open structure of MOOCs allows individuals to expand their knowledge in various topics.

Interested? Below are some links to start you off, leading to the top MOOC websites right now.

Click here to visit Coursera

Click here to visit Edx

Click here to visit Udacity

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