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KAIST Professors become BJs: Over 10 thousand viewers through MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses)2016-03-24Hit:2946

 

“We are going up to an online platform that our younger generations prefer, as they are the future leaders.”

Professors at KAIST College of Business are on the internet broadcasting station called AFREECA TV, serving as ‘BJ (Broadcasting Jockey)’. It is quite surprising that professors are on the AFREECA TV, as most of the AFREECA TV programming deals with entertaining. Professor Young-Gul Kim (KAIST) asserted that “University lectures can be more competitive when using a platform that the younger generation is in favor of.” KAIST College of Business opened its own broadcasting station called ‘Bizz@KAIST’ and has operated its online open courses since October last year.

Initially, the broadcasting service was only available to KAIST students and its alumni. Now it has been expanded and opened its service to the general public.

The number of viewers has been increasing steadily. Currently, the number of viewers is over 100 per program, well above the 60 viewers the first of day of its launch. On January 14th, about 154 viewers participated in the online open course, which is a record high. So far, about ten-thousand-and-ninety-eight viewers have taken the online lectures.

Professors are interested in seeing the dynamics and the interactions with their students simultaneously through the online platform. Students, who are timid in the offline classroom, are bold enough to ask questions and participate actively online. Sometimes the comments that students leave is quite aggressive, such as “No Fun.” This is not surprising given the entertaining characteristics of the AFRRICA TV.

This helps professors manage their courses in a creative and interesting way. For example, they approach their students with a fun concept of ‘would you like to take Business related courses that can be funnier than the entertainment programs?’ To elaborate, some professors use a variety of colors in their contents to attract attention. One professor wears a funny hat to add more fun components. Sometimes, professors give out coupons to students who give correct answers to questions. One time, a professor even sang a song to entertain their students. Prof. Kim (KAIST) said, “It is true that it is not easy to take both education and entertainment components at the same time, which takes extra time and effort for class preparation.”

Professors show a strong enthusiasm for the online courses. Professor Yeosun Yoon (KAIST) injured her forehead on the edge of a bookshelf, and shed blood right before her program started. However, she covered it with a bandage and conducted her teaching as planned. At that time, the class obtained the highest number of viewers.

Professor Kim (KAIST) who arrived in Seoul last January from Cambodia after a volunteering activity, had a bad fever and his voice was not in good condition. He said, “I couldn’t stop the class because viewers are waiting. My wife at that time wrote a comment to a chatting room which appeared to all the viewers that ‘the professor looks in bad condition today, therefore it would be nice to shorten the class time’”

Viewers gave accolades to these professors who have shown fervent interest and effort in the online courses. Some of them give out “balloons” in the online chat room, which is a coupon that can be transferrable to real money, which is donated to KAIST College of Business.

KAIST College of Business believes that interactive, online open courses like the one on AFREECA TV have the potential to change and bring new paradigms in education. When only a recorded program was shown, MOOC had a limit of not accommodating the interactive components with students. However, Prof. Kim (KAIST) mentioned with a high expectation that “The interaction with students is a unique aspect that is hard to find globally. Therefore this Live-MOOC can open a new door to online education.”

 


Contact : Bae, Sujee ( sjbae05@kaist.ac.kr )

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