ASEE Zone 2 Conference 2017

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Understanding lived experiences of students in a blended-learning neuroscience MOOC

Final Paper
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This study is part of a larger research project that aims to understand the lived experiences of
students enrolled in a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on neuroscience, offered by
Harvard University in the Fall of 2013. The course provided 185 students with physical lab kits
to conduct electrical engineering experiments. Our previous descriptive analyses of the online
survey, clickstream, and grade data show that students’ engagement with certain activities
affected their overall grades1. However, these findings do not fully reflect students’ lived
experiences or their unobserved behaviors. This paper will discuss students’ perceptions of
using the online and offline components of the course through thematic analysis performed on
the interviews of students who received lab kits. Understanding students’ lived experiences may
allow STEM MOOC educators to design online and offline activities and materials that reflect
the interactive nature of STEM topics.


Casey Lynn Haney    
Purdue University
United States

Jawaria Qureshey    
Purdue University
United States

S. Zahra Atiq    
Purdue University
United States

Jennifer DeBoer    
Purdue University
United States

David Cox    
Harvard University
United States


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