'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

Reader in Politics and Policy

St Marys University, Twickenham

Engineer

Cern

Professor of Anthropology

Maynooth University

Preceptor in Statistics

Harvard University

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Electrochemistry

Norwegian University Of Science & Technology -ntnu
See all jobs

Most Commented

Doctoral study can seem like a 24-7 endeavour, but don't ignore these other opportunities, advise Robert MacIntosh and Kevin O'Gorman

Matthew Brazier illustration (9 February 2017)

How do you defeat Nazis and liars? Focus on the people in earshot, says eminent Holocaust scholar Deborah Lipstadt

Improvement, performance, rankings, success

Phil Baty sets out why the World University Rankings are here to stay – and why that's a good thing

Laurel and Hardy sawing a plank of wood

Working with other academics can be tricky so follow some key rules, say Kevin O'Gorman and Robert MacIntosh

Warwick vice-chancellor Stuart Croft on why his university reluctantly joined the ‘flawed’ teaching excellence framework