RUSC. Universities and Knowledge Society Journal launches a call for papers for the next Special Section on 'MOOCs: Game Changer or Passing Fad? '


The Universities and Knowledge Society Journal (RUSC) is an open-access e-journal jointly published by the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalonia, UOC, Spain) and the University of New England (UNE, Australia) that comes out twice a year, in January and July.

Call for papers open for the next Special Section on 'MOOCs: Game Changer or Passing Fad? '

No recent developments in higher education have captured the imagination of the media and the attention of university leaders as MOOCs have done. Millions worldwide are enjoying free access to teaching on a wide range of topics and many institutions are joining in despite the absence of a viable business model. This special issue of the Journal will examine the phenomenon of MOOCs from different perspectives. Are they really a disruptive innovation and, if so, how are they changing higher education?

Thematic areas

We are interested in receiving research articles on this topic by authors from all educational sectors and around the world. The specific thematic areas of the Special Section are as follows:

Why and how do institutions decide to offer MOOCs?
Who are the learners and what are their patterns of behaviour?
What are the implications of MOOCs for developing countries?
What changes are MOOCs stimulating in institutions (e.g. more online learning, shorter programmes/courses, public-private partnerships, etc.)?
How is evolving technology changing the infrastructure required to offer MOOCs?
MOOCs have spread beyond higher education and are now being offered by a wider range of institutions and organisations – what is their experience?
Are viable business models for MOOCs emerging?


Guest Editors

Sir John Daniel. A 40-year veteran of open learning and distance education, he was Vice-Chancellor of the UK Open University for 11 years and served as Assistant Director-General for Education at UNESCO.

Esteban Vázquez Cano. He has a PhD in Education and has published several books and articles about the eruption of MOOCs and their implications for higher education. After 15 years as a teacher, head-master and educational supervisor in Spain and the US, he currently works in the Department of Teaching and School Organization at the Spanish National University of Distance Education (UNED). 

Mercè Gisbert. She has a PhD in Education and has been a professor in the Department of Education at Tarragona’s Universitat Rovira i Virgili for 25 years. She is a specialist in ICT applied to education and coordinates the Applied Research Group in Education and Technology and the inter-university PhD programme in Educational Technology.

Submission deadline

Articles should be submitted by 30 June 2014.

Articles will be published in Volume 12, Number 1, in January 2015.


For more information:


  • UNESCO. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • The Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP)

Sponsored by

  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry of Business and Employment. Department of Research and Universities
  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry for Foreign Action and Open Government