Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Free education

We're lucky to be living in the age of the internet because it makes knowledge and communication available to the widest audiences ever. To provide a little context I first refer to http://www.parliament.uk/briefing-papers/sn04252.pdf and elicit the following:

In 1950 17,300 students were awarded first degrees and 2,400 were awarded higher degrees at UK universities.

In 2010/11 331,000 full-time students were awarded first degrees at UK universities and 182,600 (all modes) were awarded higher degrees.

The UK population in 1950 was approximately 50 million and 63 million in 2011 so those degree statistics represent tiny proportions of the population.

Last year Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ran a course 6.002x Circuits and Electronics entirely online and available to anyone, anywhere, without charge and without preconditions. In the end, 7,157 online students would pass 6.002x—as many as might take 6.002 in 40 years at MIT

World class (and fully accredited) education provided by world class experts, free and entirely accessible to the masses.

This year the online initiative, edX, is offering courses from MIT, Harvard, UC Berkeley, University of Texas, Wellesey College and Georgetown University including physics, electronics, computing, Greek literature, morality and philosophy - all free and available to all.

Some of these courses involve higher level maths and/or physics so you'll struggle if you're not up to speed but what have you got to lose? This presents priceless opportunity, whatever your age or background. Even if you're old and passed it now why not exercise your brain just a little longer? Who knows, you might even learn something.

No comments:

Post a comment