HarvardÂ UniversityÂ andÂ MassachusettsÂ InstituteÂ of TechnologyÂ (MIT)Â offersÂ a freeÂ online college programÂ in a project calledÂ ”edx”.Â The secondÂ partnershipÂ involvesÂ financialinstitutionsÂ approximately $ 60Â millionÂ andÂ attractÂ millions ofÂ targetedÂ studentsÂ from around theÂ world.
“AnyoneÂ whoÂ hasÂ interetÂ connectionÂ anywhereÂ inÂ theÂ worldÂ have accessÂ toÂ thisÂ program,” saidÂ DrewÂ FaustÂ President of Harvard.
HarvardÂ has longÂ offeredÂ variousÂ kinds ofÂ lecturesÂ to the publicÂ throughÂ the extensionprogram.
Meanwhile,Â MITÂ itself has aÂ similarÂ programÂ sinceÂ at leastÂ a decadeÂ ago.Â The programtitledÂ OpenCourceWareÂ itÂ providesÂ millionsÂ ofÂ 2000Â lectureÂ materialÂ online and free.Such materialsÂ has also beenÂ usedÂ byÂ moreÂ than 100Â millionÂ people around theÂ world.
In DecemberÂ last year,Â MITÂ alsoÂ announced aÂ specialÂ program,Â MITx,Â whichÂ givesÂ themÂ acertificateÂ forÂ completingÂ a particularÂ onlineÂ course.Â MITxÂ programÂ is what willÂ be thefoundation forÂ newÂ learning systemÂ made ??byÂ HarvardÂ andÂ MIT.
RectorÂ SusanÂ HockfieldÂ MITÂ states,Â moreÂ than 120Â thousandÂ peopleÂ registered for thefirst batchÂ MITx.Â ”YouÂ hope thatÂ other campusesÂ will also joinÂ theÂ programÂ thisÂ edx,” saidHockfield.
Other universities,Â includingÂ Stanford,Â Yale,Â andÂ Carnegie-Mellon,Â has beenÂ testedÂ inÂ the field ofÂ globalÂ onlineÂ teaching.
Harvard-MITÂ initiativeÂ will be overseenÂ by aÂ nonprofitÂ organizationÂ based inÂ Cambridge,Massachusetts,Â UnitedÂ StatesÂ (U.S.).Â This programÂ will beÂ jointly owned byÂ both campusesÂ whoÂ bearÂ each 50Â percentÂ ofÂ the funds neededÂ to launchÂ the program.
BothÂ campusesÂ willÂ provideÂ certificatesÂ to studentsÂ whoÂ haveÂ completed theÂ course.Â Notonly that,Â edxÂ platformÂ willÂ alsoÂ be used asÂ a research toolÂ toÂ follow theÂ methodsÂ and toolsÂ whichÂ areÂ successfullyÂ implemented.