O1 – Pedagological strategy for implementation of multisensory approach in MOOCs


O1 will be useful for a wide audience of researchers, lecturers and trainers that will have a guideline in order to implement tangible games using different methodologies in the e- learning, in MOOC courses.


O1 has the tangible form of a report, a manual, with guidelines for applicants that intend to use smart objects and Internet of Things applications in distance learning in order to provide laboratory activities that supports the typical lessons in MOOCs. It has high degree of transferability because will draft a scheme and a pedagogical framework for an easy application in different contexts (formal and informal) and by different MOOCs’ topics. A special focus will be addressed for wine tasting, as a case study.
All told the expected impact is to:

  • Provide a pedagogical framework for course developers aimed at application of Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs) and Internet of Things in MOOCs
  • Provide a specific focus, as an example of application, about the wine tasting course, enology and viticulture


In most training and learning processes by MOOC, the declaratory learning (thus based on theoretical contents) is prevalent and traditionally supported by lessons and didactical materials with a linguistic approach. The methodology will work for the implementation and harmonization with a procedural learning that refers to experience and laboratorial activities. Something that is crucial in enology and even more in wine tasting, for the ability of recognition of basic level of sensorial recognition. The task will focus on the re-mediation of some specific didactic tools that are common in face to face practice, that propose an olfactory learning in order to improve the ability of discriminate different odorants in the wine blends.
It is a complete novelty for MOOCs. There are some preliminary studies that propose solutions for the integration of the mobile learning in the MOOC, in particular detecting divided attention in students. Other studies work on wearables, so the idea is to collect information from these tools (i.e. heart rate) for managing in an efficient way the learning. However, in scientific literature is a complete innovation the application of tangible objects to be used with a sensory approach in the real environment by the students, connected to a classical MOOC. The students by smelling, by touching, could learn by experience, performing exercises drafted by professors, and all the practical exercises are recorded and orchestrated by the digital interfaces.


The output will be a handbook introducing the educational framework together with tools and practical hints addressed to professors, lecturers or trainers. It will give methodological landmarks to rely on the application of innovative solutions using Tangible User Interfaces to be joined with MOOCs, and useful guidelines for an innovative and inclusive methodology.
The aims are the following:

  1. Building a comprehensive framework with the following ground-breaking elements:
    • Learner-centred approach to promote distance learning with a procedural approach based on the experience: MERGO methodology will be based on a learner-centred pedagogy, that supports the idea of an active learner.
    • Inclusive methodology to allow each user to apply these tools that involve more senses and then, are naturally inclusive also for whom has some sensory disabilities.
    • Experiential and Game-based learning to olfactory abilities
      In MERGO a Game-based methodology to train olfactory abilities in wine sector which attracts and enjoys will be proposed.
    • Autonomous learning and distance approach for procedural learning.
  2. Design a set of validation tools, in order to perform a concrete assessment of this new way to approach the MOOC learning
  3. Produce the methodological background for the development of exercises based on the TUIs and IoT paradigms
  4. Analyse and eventually implement innovations from previous projects that focused on the TEL applications in the teaching and learning of the language university courses.
  5. Impact in the wine sector, by creating a concrete case study applying a home-kit for sensory learning, in particular for olfactive recognition of odorants, with a complete integration with a MOOC on wine tasting.