Academic Focus: Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for S.I.T.

by | Apr 15, 2013 | Academic Focus, Creative Valentines Day, Evaluation Ideas, Inside the Box Innovation, The Economist | 0 comments

The University of Cincinnati announced it will launch its first Massive Open Online Course (called MOOC) next fall. It will be the first MOOC to teach Systematic Inventive Thinking (S.I.T.), an innovation method based on templates.

MOOCs are unique because they allow literally thousands of students to learn together via distance learning technology. MOOCs provide students from around the world the opportunity to learn from industry experts at little or no cost. They are a great way for individuals to learn new concepts and test their readiness for continued professional development.

S.I.T. is a structured process of innovating new products, services, and processes used by many corporations globally. A growing number of universities are teaching the method including Columbia University, University of Chicago, Wharton, MIT, and several outside the U.S..

Open online courses have risen in popularity over the past year, but they have generally not been tied to a university credential. UC is addressing this issue by launching an innovative new program this fall known as MOOC2Degree. In MOOC2Degree, the UC MOOCs will feature the same academic content and taught by the same instructors as our traditional classes. More importantly, students who successfully complete the MOOC2Degree course and enroll in an applicable UC degree program may earn credit.

As noted by Dr. Larry Johnson, UC’s interim provost notes, “We’re confident that once MOOC students begin interacting with our expert faculty and their fellow classmates, they’ll begin forming a lasting educational relationship with the university.”
Since Academic Partnerships and UC’s announcement of the MOOC2Degree program in late January, the revolutionary program has already been featured in articles from The New York Times, Inside Higher Ed and The Cincinnati Enquirer.

The first UC class to be offered in the MOOC2Degree initiative will be Innovation and Design Thinking, a cross-disciplinary course collaboratively offered by the Carl H. Lindner College of Business and the College of Engineering & Applied Sciences. The MOOC will be taught by assistant professors Drew Boyd and Jim Tappel. Students who complete the MOOC and enroll in a UC Business or Engineering degree program can apply the credits.

For more information on the UC MOOC2Degree program, please contact BJ Zirger ( (513-556-7148) at the Lindner College of Business or Eugene Rutz ( (513-556-1096) at the College of Engineering and Applied Science.