September 23, 2002
MIT revolutionizes education online

BBC reports that MIT will start putting all it's courework online:

Like almost every organisation in the US, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology spent the late 1990s struggling with the question of how to take advantage of the internet.

Many other colleges launched online degree courses aimed at anyone with a modem and a big wallet.

But MIT has taken a completely different direction with a project called OpenCourseWare (OCW) that could stop the trend of commercialising online education dead in its tracks.

This is so great and so very much in line with the initial spirit of the web:
"Why don't we, instead of trying to sell our knowledge over the internet, just give it away."

Over the next 10 years, MIT will move all its existing coursework on to the internet.

There will be no online degrees for sale, however. Instead, it will offer thousands of pages of information, available to anyone around the globe at no cost, as well as hours and hours of streaming video lectures, seminars and experiments.

It's already possible to find lots of papers and other scientific background information online for free if you know where to look, but a coordinated, pedagogical approach like MIT's can truly recolutionize the future of online education. There will be a massive knowledge management-challenge (storing the data, keeping it up to date, indexing it for searchability etc) but if these issues can be resolved adequately, I for sure will try to stop by from time to time for some tidbits...
MIT staff point out that if this initiative is successful, and other institutions follow, it will put the net back on track towards its original goal of sharing information and knowledge around the world, rather than selling CDs and t-shirts.

More information:

(via Column Two)

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Posted by: andersja on October 5, 2002 01:52 AM
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Seb's Open Research: MIT OpenCourseWare opens on September 30th (November 28, 2003 01:08 PM)
"BBC News : "Why don't we, instead of trying to sell our knowledge over the internet, just give it away." ..."

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