Joining Forces Toward Social Inclusion : Language MOOC Design for Refugees and Migrants through the Lens of Maker Culture
Journal: CALICO Journal
The expansion of MOOCs (massive open online courses) is very much associated with instructors interested in the craft of teaching, innovating, and experimenting with different methods to improve and expand students’ learning experience. The Erasmus+ project MOONLITE has worked to create cross-institutional scenarios and new educational pathways for migrants and refugees, devising, among other things, two Spanish language MOOCs (LMOOCs). They are the product of the joint efforts of university academics, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and refugee support groups (RSGs), together with volunteers, refugees, and migrants, who formed a community in order to design courses that effectively addressed the needs of refugees and migrants arriving in Spain. Using a design thinking process, all parties involved attempted to collaboratively identify strategies and solutions to a given problem that might not be obvious upon first inspection; in this case, the specific linguistic needs of migrants and refugees arriving in a new country. Results show that this continuum of academics— NGOs/RSGs—volunteers—refugees/migrants was highly effective for the learners, with an overall completion rate in both MOOCs of 96%. The participants’ perception is that these MOOCs helped them in their goal of integrating into life in Spain in key situations, such as communicating in a job interview or understanding the process of looking for accommodation and completing bureaucratic procedures.
Author: Maria Dolores Castrillo, Beatriz Sedano
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