Massive, open, online and coming to schools: Harvard and MIT invite high schools to create their own Moocs

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Source :
Auteur : William Stewart
Date de l'info : 28 mars 2014

Schools will soon be able to offer courses directly to millions of learners through two of the world’s most prestigious universities, TES can reveal.

EdX, the massive open online course (Mooc) provider run by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US, has already helped to revolutionise higher education by offering courses to anyone with an internet connection. It is now poised to do the same for schools, with plans to offer high-school-level lessons.

In an interview with TES, edX president Anant Agarwal said this could include courses designed by individual schools.

“If a school has the resources to create good-quality online courses, and has a similar mission to us, then absolutely,” he said. “I am personally deeply committed to this because how can students benefit from high-quality college courses if they don’t have the background from high school?”

The Mooc phenomenon has expanded rapidly in the past six years. Significant players such as edX were established by leading universities after initial experiments in offering free online courses and lectures attracted huge numbers of learners from around the world.

Dr Agarwal said that edX, which is still predominantly university-based, already had 100,000 high school students among its 2 million learners. Young people’s familiarity with the online world meant they were “absolutely ready” for school-based Moocs, he said.

Speaking at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai earlier this month, he added: “Why are we dragging them to class and making them sit through one-hour lectures?

“In a Mooc, we replace the one-hour lecture with learning sequences of short five-, 10-minute videos just like YouTube, interwoven with engaging interactive exercises, much like the video games kids play. It is much more engaging.”

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