Date of Award



© 2016 Michelle Chan

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Michelle Collay

Second Advisor

Carol Holmquist

Third Advisor

Terry Norris


This qualitative case study examines critical processes of building an effective MOOC in the community college environment in support of workforce development education for those who are interested in exploring different careers or to improve upon existing skill sets and development/remedial education for incoming students. Five participants from community colleges were selected to participate in this study. They were identified as a purposive sample of community colleges that offer MOOCs and use different learning management systems that support MOOCs. Themes that emerged from interviews were: unanticipated global enrollment in MOOCs designed for local and regional audiences, challenges of designing and implementing MOOCs, and different decision making models these institutions used when deciding to offer a MOOC. This research data further affirms Thomas Friedman’s (2006) idea of a flat world where technology is supporting and allowing global education for students in the United States to be able to learn alongside students from various cultures and regions. However, this research also identifies a critical need for community college leaders to collaborate with faculty throughout the development process, to recognize decision-making approaches, and to provide the necessary funding and resources to support active outreach by instructors to students who are taking MOOCs so they can provide continuous learning and necessary mentorship.


Ed.D. Dissertation