The MOOCs that I tried out were Coursera, Udacity, and CodeAcademy. My favorite out of the three is Udacity, to the point where I’m very likely to finish the entire course that I started. I started out with the Intro to Web Development with Reddit and Hipmunk co-founder Steve Huffman. That was the thing that impressed me immediately: they have someone teaching the class who is a proven web developer and could even be considered a celebrity. The way he taught the class was very effective as well. He had some sort of telestrator and was going through a very thorough, easy to understand explanation of internet basics. The course was at your own pace with quizzes in between the videos just to ensure that the user isn’t skipping through the content. But if that person has more advanced knowledge, the interface is extremely easy to navigate so that they can skip the parts they already know. If there’s anything that’s confusing, there’s an easily-accessible forum where users can ask questions.
One might say that the drawback is a lack of face-to-face interaction with other users but I think that it is far more likely that a user will finish a Udacity course than any other course. Coursera, for the most part, only offers their courses for a limited time and run on a set schedule. I tried joining a course and already missed peer-grading for one of the homeworks. The computer graded quizzes are much more practical. I read that only 10% or less of people who sign up for Coursera courses actually finish them and it’s easy to see why.
Someone in another post said that the ideal website would combine the features of multiple website and I would agree. The ideal website, for me, would have excellent content from reputable institutions and teachers while having the interactivity of a site like CodeAcademy as well as the flexibility and user interface of Udacity.