So one persistent issue with MOOCs is figuring out how many active learners you have in the pool of those who have signed up. At the get go of the fourth sequence of the Mechanical MOOC, we have 1,787 registered learners. The number of those opening the e-mails, as measured by our e-mail system’s metrics system, is a good indication of the size of the active learner community.
The week of June 3 to June 7 is the first week of getting ready e-mails, the week of June 11 to June 14 is the second week of getting ready e-mails, and June 8-9 represents opens of the first week’s assignment e-mail. There are around 400 unique opens of each getting ready e-mail. For the first week’s assignment, there are 475 opens on Monday the 17th and just over 200 opens on the 18th.
This would seem to indicate an active learner community somewhere between 475 and 675 learners, likely closer to 475 since the same learner may have opened the getting started e-mail both on the 17th and 18th. This is good news, as it seems like a critical mass of learners that will support peer interaction.