September 18, 2013
The Next Step on the Path to an Online-Only Education?

If you want to get an education with massive open online courses (MOOCs), you have to approach it like an autodidact. Combine a couple MOOCs, three or four dozen Wikipedia romps, and even a few trips to the library, and you have something comprehensive.
Or that, at least, is the idea.
Today, MIT announced plans to offer something more comprehensive. The university will soon bundle MOOCs together into “course sequences” which tackle a coherent subject matter. After finishing one of these “XSeries” sequences, students can pay to take a test, which will earn them a special “Verified Certificate” from edX.
The end-of-sequences tests will cost around $700, and they’ll be offered through verify a student’s identity in part through their webcam. As Steve Kolowich points out at the Chronicle of Higher Education, the announcement of these pay-to-verify tests follows news that Coursera has made $1 million in 2013 selling similar “verified” tests. (Coursera recently announced another $43 million in funding.)
But it’ll be some time — two years — before edX starts seeing revenue from these XSeries sequences.
Read more. [Image: Francisco Diez/flickr]

The Next Step on the Path to an Online-Only Education?

If you want to get an education with massive open online courses (MOOCs), you have to approach it like an autodidact. Combine a couple MOOCs, three or four dozen Wikipedia romps, and even a few trips to the library, and you have something comprehensive.

Or that, at least, is the idea.

Today, MIT announced plans to offer something more comprehensive. The university will soon bundle MOOCs together into “course sequences” which tackle a coherent subject matter. After finishing one of these “XSeries” sequences, students can pay to take a test, which will earn them a special “Verified Certificate” from edX.

The end-of-sequences tests will cost around $700, and they’ll be offered through verify a student’s identity in part through their webcam. As Steve Kolowich points out at the Chronicle of Higher Education, the announcement of these pay-to-verify tests follows news that Coursera has made $1 million in 2013 selling similar “verified” tests. (Coursera recently announced another $43 million in funding.)

But it’ll be some time — two years — before edX starts seeing revenue from these XSeries sequences.

Read more. [Image: Francisco Diez/flickr]

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