n.paradoxa’s MOOC (Mass Open Online Course): A Case Study in Feminist Online Pedagogies

  • Katy DeepwellEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Gender and Education book series (GED)


This essay explores how I built the independent connectivist MOOC (mass open online course),, on feminism and contemporary art, as a form of resistance to the reduction of feminist-orientated courses in art education. In this essay, I explore the complex terrain within which the MOOC sits. Distinguishing different types of MOOC and approaches to learning about art, I discuss how a cMOOC or DOCC has the capacity to offer open access forms of feminist self-education which can intervene in the dominant paradigms of education. I also demonstrate that, despite the risk of xMOOCs becoming a neoliberal replica of profit-maximisation and instrumental learning, online learning can, when designed with feminist principles, support connectivity and generate new ways of working promoting life-long learning and socialist educational goals.


Fine art Feminism Women artists MOOC cMOOC xMOOC 


  1. Alexander, J. M., & Mohanty, C. (2012). Cartographies of knowledge and power: Transnational feminism as radical praxis. In M. Luxton & M. J. Mossman (Eds.), Reconsidering knowledge: Feminism and the academy (pp. 42–63). Halifax, NS: Fernwood Publishing.Google Scholar
  2. Bligh, D. (1971). What’s the use of lectures? San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  3. Chadwick, W. (2007). Women, art and society (2nd ed.). London, UK: Thames and Hudson.Google Scholar
  4. Chicago, J. (1975). Through the flower: My struggle as a woman artist. New York, NY: Doubleday.Google Scholar
  5. Comer, D. K., & White, E. M. (2016). Adventuring into MOOC writing assessment: Challenges, results, and possibilities. College Composition and Communication, 67(3), 318–359.Google Scholar
  6. Dalton, P. (2001). The gendering of art education: Modernism, identity and critical feminisms. Buckingham, UK: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  7. FemTechNet. (2018). Last Accessed August 2018.
  8. Giuntini, P., Swartz, A., & Wentrack, K. (2017). Review of n.paradoxa’s MOOC on contemporary art and feminism. Art History Pedagogy & Practice, 2(2), 1–21. Last accessed May 2018.
  9. Hemmings, C. (2016). Is gender studies singular? Stories of queer/feminist difference and displacement’ differences. A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies, 27(2), 79–102.Google Scholar
  10. Ho, A., Chuang, I., Reich, J., Coleman, C., Whitehill, J., Northcutt, C., et al. (2015). HarvardX and MITx: Two years of open online courses Fall 2012–Summer 2014 (HarvardX Working Paper No. 10). Last accessed May 2018.
  11. Jordan, K. (2015). MOOC completion rates: The data. Last accessed May 2018.
  12. Keifer-Boyd, K. (2007). From content to form: Judy Chicago’s pedagogy with reflections by Judy Chicago. Studies in Art Education, 48(2), 134–154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Loeb, J. (Ed.). (1979). Feminist collage: Educating women in the visual arts. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.Google Scholar
  14. n.paradoxa (2010, July). Feminist Pedagogies. n.paradoxa: International Feminist Art Journal, 26.Google Scholar
  15. Parker, R., & Pollock, G. (1981). Old mistresses: Women, art and ideology (3rd ed.). London, UK: I.B. Tauris.Google Scholar
  16. Pollock, G. (2010, July). Opened, closed and opening: Reflections on feminist pedagogy in a UK university. n.paradoxa: International Feminist Art Journal, 26, 20–28.Google Scholar
  17. Sandell, R. (1979). Feminist art education: An analysis of the women’s art movement as an educational force. Studies in Art Education, 20(2), 18–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Weed, E., & Schor, N. (Eds.). (1997). Feminism meets queer theory. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Yuan, L., & Powell, S. (2013). MOOCs and open education: Implications for higher education (A White Paper). Centre for Educational Technology Interoperability Standards. Last accessed May 2018.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.KT PressMiddlesex UniversityLondonUK

Personalised recommendations