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Analysis of Student Questions in MOOC Physics Lectures: The Case of the Khan Academy
New Phys.: Sae Mulli 2019; 69: 484~496
Published online May 31, 2019;
© 2019 New Physics: Sae Mulli.

Sohee JEONG1, Jinwoong SONG1, Wonyong PARK2

1Department of Physics Education, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
2Department of Education, University of Oxford, Oxford OX2 6PY, United Kingdom

Correspondence to:
Received February 20, 2019; Revised April 1, 2019; Accepted April 4, 2019.
cc This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
This study reports an analysis of 5,538 questions asked by learners after studying the classical physics and the quantum physics units in Khan Academy's physics course, a massive open online course (MOOC) platform popular worldwide. Based on Etkina’s and Harper \textit{et al.}’s categories, the questions were coded into four levels of difficulty and six topics. In addition, the questions were further analyzed using semantic network analyses. In terms of the level of difficulty, classical physics showed similar numbers of high- and medium-level questions while in quantum physics, the number of high-level questions was significantly higher. In terms of the topic of the question, conceptual questions were the most frequently raised questions both in classical physics and quantum physics. In classical physics, questions about “concept” and “knowing” were frequently raised while the frequency of “concept” questions was significantly higher in quantum physics. The massive questions recorded on the MOOC platform allowed for effective analyses of physics questions by students. Educational implications and a prospective research agenda are proposed based on the findings.
PACS numbers: 01.40.−d, 01.50.H−,
Keywords: MOOC, Classical physics education, Quantum physics education, Question level, Question topic

May 2019, 69 (5)
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