7.00x Introduction to Biology: The Secret of Life MITx on edX Course Report - 2013 Spring
MITx Working Paper #9
11 Pages Posted: 22 Jan 2014
Date Written: January 20, 2014
This report describes 7.00x: Introduction to Biology - The Secret of Life, one of the first 11 courses offered by MITx on edX, a platform for delivering massive open online courses (MOOCs). Offered in the Spring of 2013, the content of 7.00x reflects the topics taught in introductory biology courses at MIT and many biology courses around the world. This report describes the course structure, in terms of the number of basic e-text, auto-graded problems, and video components. Following a methodology established for analysis of the first 17 HarvardX and MITx courses (Ho et al, HarvardX and MITx: The first year of open online courses), course registrants are described in terms of viewed, explored, and certified sub-populations, together with demographics. The diversity of student activity in the course, and the persistence of student interactions with the courseware, are addressed. The report concludes with descriptions of special features in 7.00x, including descriptions of a variety of new interactive problem types aimed at introductory biology.
Keywords: MOOC, Massive Open Online Course, MITx, HarvardX, edX, online learning, distance learning, higher education
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