[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT:
MOOCs have received enormous attention over the past several years. This study explores xMOOC platforms as contexts for teacher learning, focusing on teachers' perceptions of how learning in large-scale, open, online courses can be meaningful to them. We use the Creative Computing Online Workshop (CCOW) — a large-scale, online constructionist learning experience for teachers, developed on an xMOOC platform — as a central example, drawing on 15 semi-structured interviews with participants, course artifacts, and designer reflections as sources of data to develop understandings of the course qualities that teachers found meaningful. Our analysis focuses on rich descriptions of the four primary qualities that teachers described as most meaningful to their learning: (1) activity, (2) peers, (3) culture, and (4) relevance. We argue that these qualities were often mutually supporting, but that key underlying tensions in learning environments also played out within and across the experiences of individual teachers. We consider three specific tensions and their implications for the design of online teacher learning experiences: (1) autonomy, with structure, (2) diversity, with commonality, and (3) experimentation, with validation.
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