Coursera joins a raft of ambitious online projects aimed at making higher education more accessible and affordable. Many of these ventures, however, simply post entire lectures on the web, with no interactive component. Others strive to create brand-new universities from scratch.
Founders Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng say Coursera will be different because professors from top schools will teach under their university’s name and will adapt their most popular courses for the web, embedding assignments and exams into video lectures, answering questions from students on online forums — even, perhaps, hosting office hours via videoconference.
This sounds like worth keeping an eye on. It seems like it could go a long way towards disrupting the traditional educational model. In case you were wondering which schools, here you go: Stanford, Princeton, the University of California at Berkeley, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan. Not a bad list.