UCL News


UCL MOOCs development commences

15 July 2015

Following our recent partnership with FutureLearn, the UK-based social learning platform, UCL announced a competitive funding call to develop massive open online courses (MOOCs).

Quad lit 18 proposals, involving 73 members of staff across 18 UCL academic departments, were received by the deadline of 8 June.

Initially, UCL planned to fund the development of two MOOCs.  However, the outstanding quality of the submissions resulted in the following three being funded:

  • The Anthropology of Social Media, Dan Miller (Anthropology)
  • On Dementia, Tim Shakespeare (Institute of Neurology)
  • Bioethics and Reproductive Ethics, Dan Riesel (Institute of Women's Health).

The development of the three MOOCs is being supported by UCL E-Learning Environments and the Learning Technology Unit.

Diana Laurillard, Professor of Learning with Digital Technologies said:  "The proposals and outcomes received by the panel were excellent, which is an extremely encouraging indicator for the future of online learning at UCL. The rapid development of so many high quality proposals demonstrates the degree of creativity among our academics in thinking about how new digital opportunities can be optimised to address several of our strategic priorities. These three were selected because they offer innovative teaching, will bring high quality UCL research to a much wider audience, and are likely to attract large numbers of professionals and students, as well as a general interest audience. 

Due to the internal funding, central professional services are able to meet the requirements of the three proposals. However, the range and quality of the proposals submitted means that several could be developed not just as MOOCs, but also as other forms of fee-paying online courses.

This exciting programme is the first time UCL has developed MOOCs which will be open and available to all within the next twelve months. 

For further information please contact Diana Laurillard (d.laurillard@ioe.ac.uk) or read the media release 13 May 2014.