From ‘Funnel’ to ‘Tunnel’: Strategies to achieve retention of the MOOC participants

In April 2016, we had the second time offering of the MOOC on 3D animation. Looking back and comparing the two offerings (of 2015 and 2016) we can see some amazing statistics.

In all 6457 participant registered and 2465 out of these were ‘actively’ participating. (Active participation means, when participants either watch the videos, attempt quizzes, post on discussion forums, or submit assignments.) 1132 participants scored more that 50% of marks in the quizzes and received the certificates. Over the two offerings, while there has been an increase of 261% in the registrations, certifications have increased by a whooping 705%!


The first offering in 2015, had a modest registration of 1393 participants. These came from 404 towns covering 27 states in India. 31% participants were females as against 69% males. More than 50% of the participants (768), were active and 125 out of these, got the participation certificate. This was the moderate success. The participant feedback suggested that they were keen on having some face to face interaction during the course.

Based on this feedback, we re-offered the course in 2016 and proposed some interaction with the participants. Few alumnus of the 2015 course volunteered to become the course coordinators at their respective institutions/towns. The registration shot up drastically to 5033, with a representation from 988 towns covering 33 states in India. The percentage of female participants increased to 43%. This time, we managed to reach out close to 1000 participants every week using multiple levels of interaction (see figure below). The results were encouraging and 1007 participants received certificates.


In the upcoming posts, I would be discussing some of the content creation, pedagogic, and interaction strategies. Please send in your comments and suggestions here.