by Mimi Miyoung Lee (Editor), Curtis J Bonk (Editor), Thomas H Reynolds (Editor)
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In April of 2001, the president of MIT, Charles Vest, announced the establishment of a project for placing MIT course contents on the Web for free access by anyone with an Internet connection. In effect, this announcement started the OpenCourseWare (OCW) movement. Since that time, open educational resources (OER) and more recently massive open online courses (MOOCs) have proliferated. A flurry of research reports, books, programs, announcements, debates, and conferences related to MOOCs and open education have encouraged educators to reflect on how these new forms of educational delivery might enhance or even transform education. As part of this global movement, the four editors of this special issue, Mimi Lee, Curt Bonk, Tom Reynolds, and Tom Reeves, organized a one-day preconference symposium on this topic at the International E-Learn Conference in Las Vegas in October 2013. One direct result of that event is this special issue of the International Journal on E-Learning (IJEL), which contains highly informative and important papers related to the present and future of MOOCs and Open Education around the globe.