In the ongoing battle to legitimize massive open online courses (MOOCs), the students enrolled in these courses play a vital role. They are fighting for access to affordable education, for flexible class schedules, for easy accessibility, and most of all, for credibility. Students want to know that the work they put into MOOCs will be taken seriously by hiring managers, academics, and peers. As a result, they are now embracing verification and tracking solutions that they might previously have seen as invasions of privacy.
Secure testing is an essential component in the fight for legitimacy. For MOOCs to begin to hold equal weight when compared to traditional on-site courses, students must be held to certain standards, and these standards must be verifiable. Verification and safeguards are in the best interest of any student taking an online course, and more and more students seem to be realizing this.
This realization has caused many students to advocate for systems such as those offered by PSI. Students are beginning to request that these types of solutions for academic integrity be included in their online coursework. They are looking to a future where online courses are comparable to their traditional counterparts. Before they are willing to put in a time investment, they want to know that their work will be given the credit it deserves.
As both students and educators alike embrace secure testing solutions, the market for these systems will continue to expand. Technological solutions like PSI’s RPNow are likely to become more prevalent. Students will check for their inclusion before committing to a course.
It will be interesting to watch and participate as the narrative of trust in education continues to develop. As students and educators learn to navigate the evolving world of MOOCs, the discussion of legitimacy will remain at the forefront. It’s encouraging to see students standing up for online courses and advocating for solutions that can make a real difference in the legitimization of MOOCs.