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In International journal of educational technology in higher education

By the end of 2020, over 16,300 Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) from 950 universities worldwide had enrolled over 180 million students. Interest in MOOCs has been matched by significant research on the topic, including a considerable number of reviews. This study uses Machine Learning techniques and human expert supervision to generate a comprehensive systematic literature mapping review that overcomes some limitations of the traditional ones and provides a broader overview of the content and main topics studied in the specialized literature devoted to MOOCs. The sample consisted of 6320 publications automatically classified within six research topics, denominated by human experts: institutional approach, pedagogical approach, evaluation, analytics, participation, and educational resources. The content analysis of the topics identified was conducted using visual network analysis, which supported the identification of different thematic sub-clusters and endorsed the classification. Results from the review show that the lowest production of MOOC papers is within the topics of the pedagogical approach and educational resources. In contrast, participation and evaluation are the most frequent ones. In addition, the most cited papers are on the topics of analytics and resources, being the pedagogical approach and the institutional approach the less cited. This highlights the need for more MOOC research from a pedagogical perspective and calls upon the presence of educators.

Despujol Ignacio, Castañeda Linda, Marín Victoria I, Turró Carlos


Clustering, MOOCs, Machine learning