Research course opens new chapter in learning

A new degree is the first at Edinburgh to combine a short, open access course with a full Masters programme.

The MSc in Digital Education –a programme with an international reputation – has moved part of its acclaimed training course on research methods into an open online platform.

Students enrolled on the MSc programme will now participate in a Massive Open-access Online Course – or MOOC – called an Introduction to Social Research Methods (SOCRMx).

By completing the MOOC, along with some additional assessments, students will earn 20 credits at level 11 of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF).

SCQF is the national credit transfer system for all levels of qualifications in Scotland. 

This is a new development for Edinburgh, which has played a leading role in the provision of MOOCS. To date, more than 2 million people have signed up to the Edinburgh MOOCs.

Course organisers say this new development helps to integrate these popular free courses into the University’s regular course provision.

It enables MSc students to learn along with MOOC participants from a variety of backgrounds across the world.

This diversity creates a dynamic learning space, course organisers say. They hope it will enrich the study experience for both the MSc students and the MOOC learners.

The new SOCRMx course – developed by the Centre for Research in Digital Education at the Moray House School of Education – is available through the edX platform.

SOCRMx provides different experiences for different kinds of learners. Public participants in the course get a taste of what it is like to study at Edinburgh, while enrolled students get to experience the diversity of an international classroom.

Jeremy KnoxLecturer in Digital Education