'Mooc' makes Oxford online dictionary

The acronym Mooc has made the Oxford Dictionaries Online – a web-based lexicon of current English by the publishers of the Oxford English Dictionary

August 28, 2013

Defined as “a course of study made available over the Internet without charge to a very large number of people”, the word Mooc has become commonplace in academia over the last 18 months, after many higher education institutions began offering such courses.

The phrase can be traced back to 2008, when a group of Canadian scholars developed a course called Connectivism and Connective Knowledge, which was delivered to more than 2,000 online students.

However, it was in late 2011 when the Stanford University Mooc “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence” attracted around 160,000 enrolments that massive open online courses became more widely known.

Angus Stevenson, head of dictionary projects at Oxford Dictionaries, said: “New words, senses, and phrases are added when we have gathered enough independent evidence from a range of sources to be confident that they have widespread currency in English.”

Mooc is not the only education-related word to be making its debut in the online dictionary. BYOD, an abbreviation of “bring your own device” has also been added. It refers to the practice of people using their own computers, smartphones, or other devices for work purposes, and is increasingly being used in universities, with lecturers encouraging students to use their own gadgets during class.

Each month, Oxford Dictionaries adds around 150 million words to its central database of English usage examples, and approximately 1,000 of these are added to Oxford Dictionaries Online each year.

chris.parr@tsleducation.com

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 6 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Deputy Chief Examiner for Spanish ab initio INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE
Deputy Chief Examiner for Music INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE
Deputy Chief Examiner for Visual Arts INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE
Deputy Chief Examiner for Mathematics HL INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (8 September 2016)

Some lecturers will rightly encourage forms of student interaction that are impossible for those covering their faces, Eric Heinze argues

University of Oxford students walking on campus

University of Oxford snatches top spot from Caltech in this year’s World University Rankings as Asia’s rise continues

Handwritten essay on table

Universities must pay more attention to the difficulties faced by students, says Daniel Dennehy

Theresa May entering 10 Downing Street, London

The prospect of new grammar schools on the horizon raises big questions for HE, writes Nick Hillman

Nosey man outside window

Head of UK admissions service Mary Curnock Cook addresses concerns that universities might ‘not hear a word’ from applicants