So, starting a MOOC next week, on astrobiology and the search for extra terrestrial life. Hosted by coursera, it's out of Edinburgh. I'm interested to see how it works, and in particular the way it works as a student. MOOCs aren't going to replace the traditional way of doing higher education, but they are a massively important complement.
I do worry that no Irish university has taken an initiative on this. I suspect that the internal bureaucracy plus the perception that this would cost a lot in a time of scarce resources and a small intersecting set of interesting academics/tech open academics/interesting areas is the cause. Maybe a start might be for the HEA to ask each uni to do one, and to pick up the tab? Given we want to encourage more students from foreign parts to come to Ireland it might be a very cheap way to get a few tens of thousands of potential students to have a gander?