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Regular version of the site

Article

Barriers to Taking Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)

Russian Education and Society. 2016. Vol. 58. No. 3. P. 228-245.
Semenova T., Rudakova L.

Researchers of the traditional higher education system identify a number of factors affecting admission to a university (barriers to entry) and factors of its successful completion (barriers to exit). Massive open online courses (MOOCs), available to any Internet user, remove barriers to entry because anyone can study there. But do all students have an equal chance of successful completion of the online course? Do the same barriers to exit exist for MOOCs? Binary logistic regression was used to determine the way that factors related to each student's individual features affect the successful completion of online courses. This study was based on administrative data from the Coursera platform across four courses offered by the NRU HSE from February to June 2014. The results of this analysis show that there is a strong correlation between successful completion of online courses and educational experience. The probability of successful completion is higher among men with higher education who have already taken online courses and studied similar disciplines.