Another method of delivering curriculum in an online environment is through the development of massive open online courses (MOOCs). A MOOC is a course of study made available over the Internet without charge to a very large number of people. MOOCs have gained popularity in higher education as a way to provide educational content to a global audience. While the traditional higher education environment has stood the test of time as a format conducive to improving the knowledge, talent, and skills of students, a fluctuating global economy rooted in the production and transmission of information built on the backbone of the Internet requires more and flexible options for students to expand their skillsets. Occupations in the technology field, including even those outside the field that rely heavily on the use of technology, often require new and updated skills. To gain these skills, the workforce needs access to educational opportunities and credentialing that may or may not be located in their community. Online degrees and online educational programs offer this flexibility to local students and those from around the globe. The charts above show, 1) the percent of higher ed. institutions in the community offering MOOCs, and 2) institutions offering online-only degrees.
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