In the past year there has been a flurry of MOOC providers announcing online degrees or their plans for online degrees.
EdX announced their first online degree with Georgia Tech in January. Coursera announced two more online degrees (taking the total to four) in March, along with plans to offer up to twenty degrees by the end of 2019.
In June, FutureLearn announced a partnership with Coventry University to launch 50 postgrad degrees. Last year, they announced six master’s degrees and two postgraduate certificates in partnership with Deakin University.
XuetangX, a Chinese MOOC provider with over seven million students, announced three online master’s degrees with Zhengzhou University. One unique aspect of XuetangX’s master’s degrees is that they’ll include courses from seven different medical schools in mainland China, such as Peking Medical School and Xiehe University.
The online degree market is lucrative, and MOOC providers are gunning for it. Some of the earlier-announced degrees are seeing good results. Udacity and Georgia Tech’s Online Master of Science in Computer Science (OMSCS) currently has close to 6,000 students enrolled, and Coursera and University of Illinois’ iMBA has 800 students enrolled.
In a future article, we will analyze the reasons why MOOC providers are launching degrees, how MOOC-based degrees are different to traditional online degrees, and what advantages/disadvantages they have against the incumbents.
MOOCs On Campus via Class Central MOOCs are showing up on campus at MIT and Georgia Tech. On-campus students can earn credit from a MOOC for the first time.
UDACITY DOUBLES REVENUE via Class Central Udacity announced some impressive numbers at TechCrunch Disrupt: it has 9 million learners, 53,000 students currently enrolled in Nanodegrees, and 18,000 Nanodegree graduates. Oh, and Udacity also announced a Flying Car Nanodegree with a MIT faculty member.
TOP 50 MOOCsvia Class Central Last year we published our first list of the 50 highest rated MOOCs. Now we are back with an updated list of the best free online courses and MOOCs of all time.
There’s a lot going on behind the scenes, and [MOOCs] are sort of like a tidal wave where underneath there’s all this action occurring, and you may not see the surface until it actually hits the shore.
— Barbara Oakley
Andrew Ng Returnsvia Class Central Six years since he launched his first MOOC, Coursera Co-Founder Andrew Ng returns with new Deep Learning MOOCs and a Deep Learning Specialization. Read the in-depth review of the first course of the Specialization; the review was written by prolific MOOC-taker Greg Hamel.
K-MOOCvia Class Central We take a look at Korea’s official MOOC platform, K-MOOC. Class Central conducted an email interview with Dr Heon Joo Suh to learn more about K-MOOC. He is a director at the K-MOOC planning office.
NO JOB GUARANTEEvia Class Central Udacity seems to be moving away from the monthly subscription pricing, and from two of its popular programs: 50% tuition refund and job guarantees. The newer Nanodegrees are also fixed price.
EXECUTIVE SHUFFLE Tom Willerer, Chief Product Officer at Coursera left the company after four years to join a VC firm. Lila Ibrahim, who came to Coursera from a VC firm also left after six years. At Coursera she held the following roles: President, Chief Business Officer, and COO. Early this year in June, Jeff Maggioncalda joined Coursera as it’s new CEO and maybe Coursera is undergoing a leadership change.
LIVE EDUCATIONvia eLearningInside Irish-based online education startup Shaw Academy is raising £2.2 million through crowdfunding at a valuation of £83 million. The startup claims to have four million students. Their main differentiation is that the courses are live and interactive, though when I tried one of their “live webinars” it was clearly pre-recorded and played at a specific time.
FINED AND SOLD Coding Bootcamp Flatiron School had an interesting last few days. First, the New York Attorney General fined them $375,000 for operating without a license and misleading claims. Then they got acquired by WeWork, a startup that offers co-working space. WeWork is valued at a staggering $20 billion.
!MOOCSvia Class Central Type !moocs in the DuckDuckGo search engine to search on Class Central.
MOOC MONETIZATION UPDATES Kadenze, an arts-focused MOOC platform, has doubled its subscription prices from $10/month to $20/month. FutureLearn has launched completely paid courses for the first time. And finally, two popular Coursera professors share their take on Coursera’s monetization changes.
MOOCS FROM SOUTH AFRICAvia Class Central The University of Cape Town boasts three courses in Class Central’s Top 50 MOOCs of All Time. This South African university has released ten MOOCs thus far — four on the FutureLearn platform and the other six on Coursera.
YEAR OF MICROCREDENTIALvia EdSurge EdSurge’s Jeff Young deems that 2017 might be The Year of Microcredential. According to Anant Agarwal, the edX CEO, MIT’s Supply Chain Management MicroMasters has brought in more than $4 million in revenue. We cited that the rise of credentials in MOOCs was one of the top trends in 2016.
FUN TURNS FOURviaEduPros.fr France Digital University (France Université Numérique, or “FUN”) turned four, and has launched FUN Campus and FUN Corporate in the hopes of achieving self-sustainability. The French government provides half of its annual budget of €2.5 million, but its five year commitment is set to expire soon. The platform boasts 3.4 million users and 330 courses from 104 schools.
LEARNING TO LEARNvia The New York Times Barbara Oakley, the instructor behind Learning How To Learn and Mindshift, has been profiled by The New York Times.
EdX is sponsoring the Hacker Noon, a publication for developers hosted on Medium.
WOZ Uvia EdSurge Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak launches an online coding school. The startup venture is part of Southern Careers Institute (SCI), a private for-profit school based in Austin, Texas.
FRESHMAN MOOCS via edX Blog Modern States Education Alliance, a philanthropy, announces a freshman-year-for-free program. Modern States published a catalog of 40 online courses that help students prepare for AP and CLEP exams from the college board, and announced it will pay exam fees to the college board for the first 10,000 test takers.
GROW WITH GOOGLE Google announced a $1 billion grant program called Grow With Google to help Americans skill up. Coursera and Udacity are both beneficiaries of this grant.
MANDATORY TEACHER TRAININGvia Hindustan Times The Indian government made it mandatory for untrained teachers to register on SWAYAM, India’s official MOOC platform, or risk losing their jobs. 1.5 million “untrained” teachers, including over 1 million from private schools, have enrolled for a training course by the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry.
MOOCWatch is our semi-regular publication where we dive deep into the world of MOOCs, giving the latest trends, news, and our perspective on what’s happening in the industry. In addition to broad coverage, MOOCWatch also contains unique data sourced from Class Central (such as course popularity rankings). To subscribe to MOOCWatch, visit classcentral.com/moocwatch
Dhawal is the CEO of Class Central, the most popular search engine and review site for online courses and MOOCs. He has completed over a dozen MOOCs and has written over 200 articles about the MOOC space, including contributions to TechCrunch, EdSurge, Quartz, and VentureBeat.