Computer Science Classes : College University Offer At No Cost ( Vardi, 2012 )

1331 Words Jul 9th, 2015 null Page
In 2011, 450,000 students signed up for three online computer science classes that Stanford University offered at no cost (Vardi, 2012). Shortly afterwards, it became a talked about topic in higher education (Billsberry, 2013). The popularity of MOOCs (massive open online courses) has kept growing ever since (Vardi, 2012). The amount of knowledge that is now being shared with MOOCs in unprecedented (Billsberry, 2013). Prestigious colleges such as MIT, Harvard, and Stanford have partnered with course delivery companies such as Coursera, edX, and Udacity to provide MOOCs of the same courses that their paying, degree-students take on campus (O’Conner, 2014). The vision is to offer high quality education to everyone (O’Conner, 2014).
From a student’s perspective, there is value to be gained from the free courses. In a recent survey at Northwestern University, approximately ninety percent of the students that signed up for a MOOC already had a Bachelor’s degree and were looking to enhance their current skill set (Youngman, 2013). Over seventy percent of students are taking advantage of the courses and adding the skills gained to their resumes (Youngman, 2013). Additionally, eighty-nine percent of the participants in the MOOCs, agreed that they felt smarter and better educated, having completed the course (Youngman, 2013). Employers that were surveyed stated that the certificates received from taking MOOCs is questionable, but they are more generally concerned with…

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