In brief, rarely.
MOOCs are accessories to your education unless you were able to utilize them toward a degree plan – some accredited degree options are allowing that now.
Here’s when I would:
- the MOOC was graded and or was part of your degree plan.
- the MOOC points to interesting hobbies – you have a degree in marketing, but you’ve successfully taken a series of MOOCs on nuclear physics. That’s a conversation point. It beats the line in many resumes that says, “I like travel, reading….” couch, couch, gag. If you’ve taken diverse, strong MOOCs, list in the extra section of your resume instead of the “travel, reading, skiing”. ***
- the MOOC was taught by a legitimate powerhouse within the field and you had an opportunity to interact in small class discussions – even if with a teaching assistant.
It’s hard to imagine other times I would recommend including a mooc.
***Quick note about the hobbies line so many folks use on resumes – don’t include your sports unless you’re serious about them. Competitive skier who has either competed regularly in the past 5 years or was nationally ranked previously, fine, include skiing. Recreational skier who hits powder 2–3 times a year, NO. Stop wasting space on your resume.
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