updated 07:58 am EDT, Wed September 11, 2013
'Massive open online course' site accepting proposals, launching in early 2014
Google is hoping to improve the online education landscape by helping create a central location for learning online. Working with MIT and Harvard educational initiative edX, Google has launched MOOC.org for 'massive open online courses,' a site that will play host to a number of online courses built upon the Open edX platform.
Though edX and MOOC.org have similar goals, the two will work separately, and also differently. Where edX allows for courses from specific universities, MOOC.org will accept courses from other universities, businesses, governments, and teachers. MOOC.org will also be hosted on Google's own cloud-based infrastructure, rather than edX's systems. At the same time, edX and Google will be collaborating together, researching more effective ways of how to educate people, and improving educational technology.
"We envision that the site will become an ideal way to develop and refine novel online learning experiences," said edX president Anant Agarwal, continuing, "Faculty, for example, new to online learning could get their feet wet, and learners who may not want to take a full course could also just get a taste. Moreover, we will be able to learn how to improve our platform by having more individuals build and use content."
Currently, MOOC.org is accepting requests from educators, institutions and businesses that wish to add courses to the site, and hopes to go live in the first half of 2014.