MOOC-less in Africa

This map shows the location of the 19 MOOC providers round the world: 8 in the USA, 1 in the UK, 1 in Ireland, 4 in Europe, 2 in Central and South America, 2 in Australia, and 1 in China. And – starkly - none at all in the whole of the African continent.

Why does this matter? In short, because it leaves Africans as recipients of global education offerings, not creators of it. While many of the MOOCs on offer may be exciting and interesting to Africans and everyone else, many may not. None of the MOOCs on offer via the MOOC aggregator Class Central are about Africa nor do they appear to include any content about Africa at all.

One might suggest that these MOOCs are a great starting point, and that in the spirit of open education, they could be adapted and remixed for local conditions. But a first scan of the licenses of the main MOOC providers indicates that this is not possible. Even Udacity’s Creative Commons licence is the narrowest kind, not allowing derivatives. So it is a matter of take the courses and their curricula or leave them.

A vision of education as a global marketplace with Africa as the consumers and the rest of the world as the providers is not in Africa’s interests. It is time we got on the map!

MOOC World Map

MOOC Providers [MOOC Map created by Uvania Naidoo, OpenUCT Intern] - Click on the map to access the interactive version.


Class Central. Available at: [Accessed: 6 September 2013].   

Map: Worldwide MOOC Providers. Available at: [Accessed: 5 September 2013].

ListedTech. Worldwide MOOCs (19 systems). Available at: [Accessed: 4 September 2013].

Internet World Stats. Available at: [Accessed: 13 August 2013].

Information Week Education. Udacity Hedges on Open Licensing for MOOCs. Available at: [Accessed: 6 September 2013].

by Laura Czerniewicz and Uvania Naidoo


Submitted by Dr Juan Klopper on

Their is no shortage of ability in creating MOOC's in Africa. I am currently working on two and have discussed this with OpenUCT and the CHED at UCT. The University authorities need to connect us up / sign up to the various service providers, that's all!

Add comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.