Campus students report more flexibility, reduced stress in taking an online version of a popular MIT course.

Last fall, the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) and MIT Office of Digital Learning piloted a full-credit online course for a small cohort of residential students. The popular 6.002 (Circuits and Electronics) was offered as 6.S064, leveraging an existing massive open online course (MOOC) available via the edX platform and adding a private discussion forum for MIT students.

The Teaching and Learning Lab conducted an assessment of this pilot, which is now published as an internal working paper. This preliminary assessment suggests that there are benefits to an online-while-on-campus course format. Specifically, the students who completed 6.S064 reported more flexibility with scheduling and less overall stress relative to their traditional classes. While the findings are based upon a small sample, the pilot bodes well for the possibility of allowing more student choice in how and when they learn.

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