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Decoding and designing massive open online courses (MOOCs)

Archana Shrivastava (HR Department, Balaji Institute of Modern Management, Sri Balaji University, Pune, India)
Ashish Shrivastava (HR Department, Speedmart Pvt. Ltd., Bhopal, India)

Interactive Technology and Smart Education

ISSN: 1741-5659

Article publication date: 18 January 2022

Issue publication date: 2 February 2023




This study aims to investigate the attributes of the online programme that are considered and compute their relative importance in the purchase decision. This study aims to identify the most lucrative bundling of these attributes and their levels that can be used by online education companies to craft their product design strategy to attract customers with the most attractive offering.


This research paper endeavours to identify the attributes of online education, which customers consider for making a purchase decision. Exploratory factor analysis followed by confirmatory factor analysis was used to identify the key attributes of online education programmes. This paper uses the conjoint analysis technique to identify the most preferred bundling of attributes, which online education companies can package to attract customers.


Based on various attributes and their respective levels, it is evident the most lucrative design for attracting customers to buy online education programmes is to provide certification from a reputed international university, which requires an investment to the tune of 3,000–5,000. The duration of four weeks with asynchronous pedagogy and access to course material vial uniform resource locator (URL) is a preferred feature. Access via a mobile application is more preferred over Web access. A phone application is known to be optimised, and most people are using mobile phones to access the internet. Online certification or degrees that are considered as valid employment qualifications were most preferred over other reasons.


There is a dearth of studies on massive open online courses (MOOCs) from a product design perspective. There is a gap in the context of the features to be included in the MOOCs package so that the customer can find more value in it, and the companies can benefit by expanding their customer base. The research question which this study endeavours to explore is what attributes consumers of MOOCs consider when making a purchase decision. This study will also find the relative importance of these attributes.



Shrivastava, A. and Shrivastava, A. (2023), "Decoding and designing massive open online courses (MOOCs)", Interactive Technology and Smart Education, Vol. 20 No. 1, pp. 89-105.



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