Abstract—This study reviews research methods commonly
adopted in scholarly literature on students’ and instructors’
experiences of using Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs),
published from January 2014 to April 2016. 53 articles were
identified through a search of four electronic databases. The
findings show that surveys, interviews, and log files extracted
from MOOC platforms were the most frequently adopted
methods for data collection. The use of other qualitative
research methods such as diary studies and focus groups was
less common. The majority of identified articles adopt a single
research method. Methodological triangulation is observed in
studies which collect data from multiple sources. For studies
which adopted methodological triangulation, it is observed that
surveys are often triangulated with interviews and log files. The
ways in which MOOC scholars use the key research methods are
discussed, and future research avenues based on the research
results are provided.
Index Terms—MOOC, research method, student, review, online course.
R. Deng and P. Benckendorff are with UQ Business School, the University of Queensland, 39 Blair Dr, St Lucia, Queensland, Australia (e-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org).
Cite: Ruiqi Deng and Pierre Benckendorff, "A Contemporary Review of Research Methods Adopted to Understand Students’ and Instructors’ Use of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)," International Journal of Information and Education Technology vol. 7, no. 8, pp. 601-607, 2017.