Today, Coursera released the results of a first-ever survey of course completers on Coursera and their self-reported learning outcomes. Researchers at Coursera, University of Pennsylvania and University of Washington wrote a paper analyzing the results from 52,000 respondents that was published in Harvard Business Review.
The survey reveals that the vast majority of learners who complete open online courses are reporting career advancement (72%) or educational advancement (61%). These reported outcomes were considerably greater among learners who cited career or educational advancement as their primary motivation for enrolling in online courses.
Among learners who identified career advancement as a primary motivation, 87% reported career benefits, and 33% reported tangible benefits like receiving a pay raise, earning a promotion, starting a new job or launching a new business. Among learners who identified educational advancement as a primary motivation, 88% reported educational benefits, and 18% reported tangible benefits like receiving credit or fulfilling prerequisites towards an academic degree.
In addition, learners from lower socioeconomic status (SES), emerging economies, and those without a bachelor’s degree were significantly more likely to report benefits, indicating that open online education can open doors to opportunity for learners of all backgrounds, and especially those at a disadvantage.
“We founded Coursera nearly four years ago with a vision toward transforming lives by expanding access to the world’s best education,” said Daphne Koller, Co-Founder and President of Coursera. “With this survey, we are beginning to see the positive impact open online learning already has had on so many people around the globe, and noticeably for those seeking a boost for their careers. What’s more, tangible benefits are reported at an even higher rate among learners from emerging economies, in lower SES brackets and from other non-traditional education backgrounds, signaling that MOOCs are able to help those with great need.”
See the full report:
Download the report here.
To view results for individual regions around the world, click here: