Videos as learning objects in MOOCs: A study of specialist and non‐specialist participants' video activity in MOOCs
Journal article, 2019

Despite the emergence of massive open online courses (MOOCs) and the field of MOOC research, we have a limited understanding of the specific needs of different learner groups and how MOOCs can successfully address those needs. Video lectures and demonstrations are a central learning component of MOOCs. This paper contributes to the research community by examining the use of MOOC videos for two groups of learners. In particular, we explore whether there is an observable difference between specialists' and non‐specialists' video‐watching activity. We analyse data collected from three MOOCs on the edX platform. Our findings indicate that while age and educational background impacts the level of video activity, there is no significant difference between specialists and non‐specialists. We conclude that the MOOC format may be suited to non‐specialist groups, allowing them to self‐direct their learning and utilise videos as educational resources.

lifelong learning

video activity



video-based learning


Christian Stöhr

Chalmers, Communication and Learning in Science, Engineering Education Research - EER (Chalmers)

Natalia Stathakarou

Karolinska Institutet

Franziska Mueller

University of Gothenburg

Sokratis Nifakos

Karolinska Institutet

Cormac McGrath

Karolinska Institutet

British Journal of Educational Technology

0007-1013 (ISSN) 1467-8535 (eISSN)

Vol. 50 1 166-176

Areas of Advance

Information and Communication Technology

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Subject Categories

Interaction Technologies

Pedagogical Work

Learning and teaching

Pedagogical work



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