This UNICON Research Report focuses on MOOCs and executive education and starts by exploring the business models of Udacity, Coursera, EdX, Udemy and 2U.
“For executive education, the developments in this area may provide opportunities for extending reach within organisations, for engaging faculty in new and exciting ways, and for providing educational opportunities that are more flexible in meeting participants’ needs,” concludes author Jennifer Stine.
However, there are also the unanswered questions about the long-term sustainability of MOOCs, and about how their adoption may impact faculty or could influence the strategic direction of institutions.
The author refers to how the disruptive innovation model was specifically applied to executive education in an Harvard Business Review Blog published in January 2013 by Berkeley faculty member Morten T. Hansen. The main drivers are repeated, being that:
Surveying the Executive Education Audience
- companies have online learning platforms and will be looking for content thereby creating demand,
- hybrid and online programmes are attractive from a cost/time perspective,
- new technologies make the online experience more appealing, and
- networking is increasingly going online which would lessen one of the key benefits of meeting face-to-face.
As part of the research project a nine question survey (in English and Spanish) was sent to past participants of open enrollment executive education programmes at five differnet business schools including EFMD members INSEAD and ITAM.
Interesting findings include:
Leaders of executive education units were also interviewed as part of the research project and reports that:
- Affinity for on-line programmes is evenly distributed over age ranges. The highest percentage of respondents to the English language survey were in the 40-49 age range, in the Spanish language survey respondents were a decade younger.
- Programmes that combine on-line and face-to-face are reported as the type of training having most value in terms of personal learning (according to 45.5% English and 52.5% Spanish survey respondents). A much smaller percentage favour “on-line” programmes only: 15% in the English and 20% in the Spanish survey.
- When evaluating the suitability of on-line education for executive education, 52% of respondents to the English language survey, and 68% of the respondents to the Spanish language survey, feel that online learning was well or highly suited for executive education.
- Concerning conditions making it more likely to enrol in an on-line executive education programme, lower cost is an important factor for nearly half of the respondents. However, Spanish language respondents feel more strongly about course credits.
- 80% of survey respondents report to have taken on-line or blended programmes, only a small number reported taking MOOC-model courses.
The UNICON research report “MOOCs and Executive Education” by Jennifer K.Stine is free to download from the UNICON website.
- Several types of innovations are being explored especially around deepening the learning experience.
- Few are worried about the erosion of value in high-touch, high-end programmes such as leadership development.
- There is concern, however, about the more skills-based, open enrollment programmes.
MOOCs and their impact on executive education will be a topic amongst many that will be explore and debated during the upcoming EFMD Executive Development Conference to be held from October 9 to 11, 2013, hosted by Stockholm School of Economics IFL Executive Education.
The theme for the conference is: “The New Frontiers of Executive Development” and you are warmly invited to join us.
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