Online Learning Update

November 30, 2012

Online learning set to change the education landscape

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:10 am

by Rajiv Rao, Business Standard (India)

India, with its enormous appetite for — but paltry supply of — quality education, sits squarely in the middle of this upheaval. For instance, for-profit Coursera, the leading player in this market which has signed up close to two million unique users in less than six months and has 206 online courses, says Indians comprise 4.83 per cent of its active student base and are its second-largest cohort, next only to the US and ahead of Britain, Canada and Brazil. It offers courses from 33 of the world’s best colleges — Stanford, Princeton, and the Berklee College of Music included. Here, students have access to the same curriculum, even professors, as on-campus students would at these respective colleges. It’s also completely free. Anant Agarwal’s edX is the other pioneer in this field but, unlike Coursera, it is a not-for-profit entity with 10 classes currently offered on its website. However, much like Coursera, it has begun attracting Indians in waves. Overall, India is the second-ranking location for seven of the eight courses that edX offers (US holds the first rank in these seven). It is also the number-one location for an online course that is the bedrock of any MIT education in its campus avatar — Circuits and Electronics — with 30 per cent of its online students based in India (The US was second with 22 per cent).

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