U of T takes part in free online course explosion
The University of Toronto is one of 12 new schools to join Coursera, an American online education platform that offers free university courses open to students of the world.
U of T will be the first Canadian university to teach with it, along with Princeton, University of Michigan, Stanford, and Pennslyvania State University.
Coursera describes itself as “a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free.”
As of July 2012, Coursera attracted over 680,000 students from 190 countries to its 43 courses.
“This is a way for U of T to have an impact out there in the real world,” said U of T professor Charmaine Williams. “Our communities give a lot to universities and it’s good for universities to give back.”
In a recent press release Coursera stated, “Students have greater access than ever before to the world’s foremost subject matter experts. Professors can reach more students in one course than they could have hoped to in a lifetime. Universities can teach millions worldwide, and make time oncampus for interactive inclass learning. This is truly the future of higher education.”
The company is founded by two Stanford University professors, Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng. The company has received media attention since it was founded in the fall of 2011.
—With files from the Eyeopener, Coursera, and The Varsity