Professional Learning in Open Networks: How Midwives Self-Regulate their Learning in Massive Open Online Courses

  • Annette DalsgaardEmail author
  • Vasudha Chaudhari
  • Allison Littlejohn
Part of the Research in Networked Learning book series (RINL)


This chapter reports on how midwives self-regulate their learning in an open, online network which was constituted as a massive open online course (MOOC). A validated survey instrument measuring self-regulated learning in MOOCs was distributed as a post-course online survey to 2039 enrolled participants. Two hundred seventeen participants completed the questionnaire, equivalent to a response rate of 11%. This rate is higher than the normal response rate to post-course surveys reported in MOOCs. The analysis identified seven specific factors that influence the ways midwives learn in the MOOC. There is strong evidence that midwives’ approach to networked learning is aligned to their practice, with findings suggesting that the midwives’ learning in the MOOC was characterised through self-reflection and expansive critical thinking. These findings will be of interest to those who plan for and design online, networked learning for health professionals, offering design guidelines; to midwife educators, identifying key learning characteristics of midwives; and to professional bodies, pointing to models for future networked professional learning.


Continuing professional development Midwives MOOCs Networked learning Professional learning Self-regulated learning 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Annette Dalsgaard
    • 1
    Email author
  • Vasudha Chaudhari
    • 2
  • Allison Littlejohn
    • 3
  1. 1.Aalborg UniversityAalborgDenmark
  2. 2.Open UniversityMilton KeynesUK
  3. 3.College of Social SciencesUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK

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