/// Harvard and MIT Launch $60M Non-Profit Online EdX Platform
Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology today are launching a non-profit, open-sourced joint online learning venture called EdX , with the first courses to start in the fall of this year. Basically, Harvard is jumping in as an equal partner to a previously announced project called MITx , with each school putting up $30 million in funding and contributing faculty leaders. EdX will offer Harvard and MIT classes online for free, with other schools invited to join in the future. The two Boston area schools are essentially leapfrogging Stanford University, where a set of online classes last year gave rise to the creation of two for-profit companies led by the Stanford professors who taught the classes — Sebastian Thrun’s Udacity and Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng’s Coursera . Stanford is still figuring out its own approach to online learning . EdX will bring MIT and Harvard courses to students around the world with no admissions requirements, free classes and “a modest fee” for credentials earned by students, according to plans posted today . The open-source platform will include “self-paced learning, online discussion groups, wiki-based collaborative learning, assessment of learning as a student progresses through a course, and online laboratories.” “Online education is not an enemy of residential education, but rather a profoundly liberating and expanding ally,” said MIT President Susan Hockfield at a press conference this morning.