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"Bioinformatics: introduction and methods," a bilingual Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) as a new example for global bioinformatics education.

Ding Y, Wang M, He Y, Ye AY, Yang X, Liu F, Meng Y, Gao G, Wei L - PLoS Comput. Biol. (2014)

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Bioinformatics, State Key Laboratory of Protein and Plant Gene Research, School of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing, People's Republic of China.

ABSTRACT

Bioinformatics is a fast-growing interdisciplinary field in which the demand for quality education exceeds the supply, especially in developing regions and countries. A massive open online course (MOOC) is a new model for education that delivers videotaped lectures and other course materials over the Internet for all interested persons around the globe to learn for free. Here we present our MOOC “Bioinformatics: Introduction and Methods,” which is the second bioinformatics MOOC in the world and one of the first batch of seven MOOCs from China. In the first two runs of this bilingual MOOC, more than 30,000 students with diverse backgrounds registered from 110 countries and regions. In this manuscript, we present the content design of the MOOC, the demographic profiles and learning patterns of the students, the requirement for English support, and feedback from on-campus students. We offer a few suggestions to other scientists who may be interested in creating a MOOC. We also remember the S* course, a successful open online bioinformatics course that ran from 2001 to 2007, long before the current wave of MOOCs. We believe that MOOC education has great potential to enhance global bioinformatics education.

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Students' preference for in-class recording versus studio recording.(A) Half of the students were fine with both styles. The other half had different preferences. (B) Subtle but meaningful differences in preference of recording styles exist between English- and Chinese-speaking students.
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pcbi-1003955-g004: Students' preference for in-class recording versus studio recording.(A) Half of the students were fine with both styles. The other half had different preferences. (B) Subtle but meaningful differences in preference of recording styles exist between English- and Chinese-speaking students.

Mentions: We also experimented with two videotaping styles at the beginning of the first run: in-class recording and studio recording. The lectures were taught in Chinese with subtitles in both Chinese and English at the time of the survey. In-class recording meant that the video was captured when the instructor was teaching the lecture live on campus. Studio recording was done when the instructor recorded his or her voice and captured the computer screen simultaneously in a studio or office, without capturing the instructors' faces. The main differences between the two styles are that in the in-class recording style the instructor was shown from time to time and his or her voice seemed more colloquial and natural, whereas in the studio recording style, only screen captures were shown and the instructor's words were more accurate but monotonic. We surveyed the preference of the students. Half of the students were fine with both styles, and about equal numbers of students had a strong preference for one style or the other (Fig. 4A). When we correlated preference with language proficiency, we found that students who speak Chinese but not English had a stronger preference for in-class recording, whereas students who speak English but not Chinese had a stronger preference for studio recording (Fig. 4B). Since the lectures were taught in Chinese, we speculate that the Chinese-speaking students might have preferred the more natural voices and images in the in-class recording, whereas the images of someone speaking a foreign language might have been a distraction for the English-speaking students who did not understand Chinese.


"Bioinformatics: introduction and methods," a bilingual Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) as a new example for global bioinformatics education.

Ding Y, Wang M, He Y, Ye AY, Yang X, Liu F, Meng Y, Gao G, Wei L - PLoS Comput. Biol. (2014)

Students' preference for in-class recording versus studio recording.(A) Half of the students were fine with both styles. The other half had different preferences. (B) Subtle but meaningful differences in preference of recording styles exist between English- and Chinese-speaking students.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4263353&req=5

pcbi-1003955-g004: Students' preference for in-class recording versus studio recording.(A) Half of the students were fine with both styles. The other half had different preferences. (B) Subtle but meaningful differences in preference of recording styles exist between English- and Chinese-speaking students.
Mentions: We also experimented with two videotaping styles at the beginning of the first run: in-class recording and studio recording. The lectures were taught in Chinese with subtitles in both Chinese and English at the time of the survey. In-class recording meant that the video was captured when the instructor was teaching the lecture live on campus. Studio recording was done when the instructor recorded his or her voice and captured the computer screen simultaneously in a studio or office, without capturing the instructors' faces. The main differences between the two styles are that in the in-class recording style the instructor was shown from time to time and his or her voice seemed more colloquial and natural, whereas in the studio recording style, only screen captures were shown and the instructor's words were more accurate but monotonic. We surveyed the preference of the students. Half of the students were fine with both styles, and about equal numbers of students had a strong preference for one style or the other (Fig. 4A). When we correlated preference with language proficiency, we found that students who speak Chinese but not English had a stronger preference for in-class recording, whereas students who speak English but not Chinese had a stronger preference for studio recording (Fig. 4B). Since the lectures were taught in Chinese, we speculate that the Chinese-speaking students might have preferred the more natural voices and images in the in-class recording, whereas the images of someone speaking a foreign language might have been a distraction for the English-speaking students who did not understand Chinese.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Bioinformatics, State Key Laboratory of Protein and Plant Gene Research, School of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing, People's Republic of China.

ABSTRACT

Bioinformatics is a fast-growing interdisciplinary field in which the demand for quality education exceeds the supply, especially in developing regions and countries. A massive open online course (MOOC) is a new model for education that delivers videotaped lectures and other course materials over the Internet for all interested persons around the globe to learn for free. Here we present our MOOC “Bioinformatics: Introduction and Methods,” which is the second bioinformatics MOOC in the world and one of the first batch of seven MOOCs from China. In the first two runs of this bilingual MOOC, more than 30,000 students with diverse backgrounds registered from 110 countries and regions. In this manuscript, we present the content design of the MOOC, the demographic profiles and learning patterns of the students, the requirement for English support, and feedback from on-campus students. We offer a few suggestions to other scientists who may be interested in creating a MOOC. We also remember the S* course, a successful open online bioinformatics course that ran from 2001 to 2007, long before the current wave of MOOCs. We believe that MOOC education has great potential to enhance global bioinformatics education.

Show MeSH