Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Open Education

There was a great supplement in The Guardian yesterday, entitled Digital Student.

One article which particularly stood out was on Apple's Itunes U service, allowing for universities to upload lectures for free for users to download. This is something the likes of Stanford and Harvard have been down with for a while now but it was only a couple of months ago that Oxford and Cambridge got on the case too.

Services like Itunes U allow a unique marketing opportunity for globally recognized institutions to build brand equity by spreading their content to every corner of the globe.

Personally, I am a huge fan The Open University's OpenLearn facility. Over the last couple of months I've enrolled in a few maths modules to bring my numeracy skills up to scratch. The platform provides a plethora of subjects and modules for users to sign up to, totally free. It's fascinating to look at the other members enrolled in each module and see how their membership is made up from people mostly outside of the UK. I've also dipped my toe into an Introduction To Computer Science course at Harvard, which can be accessed here.

The future of education is clicks and mortar.

In the current financial climate it is logical to assume that tech investments will be made in startups that have some kind of social benefit. Channel 4's stake in School Of Everything is just one example of this.

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