The Swiss MOOC Service, a swissuniversities-sponsored service for the entire Swiss university landscape, launched in March this year. SWITCH provided the fundamental infrastructure through its academic cloud solution SWITCHengines.
The digitalisation of the university sector is in full swing, as evidenced by, among other factors, the increased demand for MOOCs. These require video-based e-learning content from individual universities to be made available to a broad public.
Over the past four years, several Swiss universities have experimented with MOOCs, producing almost 100 online courses. The eduhub SwissMOOC Special Interest Group (SIG) coordinates and actively promotes these activities. Since March 2018, the further development of the new MOOC platform has been officially supported by swissuniversities.
The aim of the SwissMOOC Service is to offer universities new opportunities to access the global education market. At the same time, it promotes active learning among students and the professionalized execution of online exams. The service demands are high: distribution of online courses must abide by legal requirements in the local jurisdiction and ensure synchrony with courses on campus. Furthermore, commercial independence is vital for further education, and scalability is key for the global campus.
The platform is federally constructed. This means that each institution uses it for their own purposes, while online courses are guaranteed greater visibility if necessary. Courses of any type or size can be made available, and access can be public, limited to the institution, or protected.
From the outset, the service has been developed on the basis of SWITCHengines. True to its role as a provider of legally compliant, scalable fundamental infrastructures, the SWITCH foundation is at the heart of the action when it comes to changing teaching methods within and beyond university campuses.