MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA--(Marketwire - Sep 19, 2012) - Coursera today announced that Berklee College of Music, Brown University, Columbia University, Emory University, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, The Ohio State University, University of British Columbia, University of California, Irvine, University of Florida, University of London, University of Maryland, University of Melbourne, University of Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt University, and Wesleyan University have signed agreements with Coursera to bring courses online for free to expand education opportunities on university campuses and worldwide. With today's announcement, Coursera now hosts roughly 200 courses from 33 domestic and international universities and reaches over 1.3 million students across the globe.
Since its first course offerings six months ago, Coursera has accelerated toward its mission to educate millions worldwide, building meaningful community engagement systems, and establishing advanced technologies to support learning online. The 17 universities joining Coursera's platform today will expand the course roster, adding new and increasingly broad perspectives in the areas of music, medicine, humanities and more.
"Previously I was unable to attend traditional college classes," said Coursera student Laura Cushing. "Now the door to higher education is wide open and I can learn online in a global classroom of peers, in classes taught by professors at top universities. Thanks to Coursera, I am reaching an educational future I never thought possible. There are as many stories as there are students, but we all have one thing in common -- a love of learning that Coursera helps us realize."
Students have access to valuable experiences beyond lectures and on-campus activities through Coursera's extensive community engagement opportunities, which include in-person Meetups in over 600 cities around the world, thousands of community forums on Coursera, and professor and student-organized networking. Coursera is also offering university professors opportunities to share their knowledge with larger audiences, explore new teaching methods in the classroom, and gain valuable feedback on student activity and educational outcomes.
"At Vanderbilt, we have the luxury of teaching extraordinary students in small classes and of working in close collaboration with undergraduates, graduate students, and other faculty," said Jay Clayton, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of English, and Director of the Curb Center for Art, Enterprise, and Public Policy at Vanderbilt University. "We will never give up that advantage -- it's what makes Vanderbilt distinctive -- but that doesn't mean we shouldn't look for innovative ways to use new media to enrich on-campus community. Coursera gives us something more: the opportunity to reach out to a global audience and stimulate fresh thinking, share cutting-edge ideas, and provide new knowledge to people who will never have the chance to come study at Vanderbilt in person."
"We set out to make education accessible to everyone around the world, and seeing our vision come to life has been an incredible experience," said Daphne Koller, Coursera co-founder. "With the addition of the exceptional, forward-thinking institutions coming on board today, we're proud to offer an even more diverse experience to our students."
"Over the coming months, we will continue to focus on bringing the best educational content and support systems to people around the world so that they can continue to enrich their lives through learning," said Andrew Ng, Coursera co-founder.
New courses will join current university offerings on Coursera over the coming months. For a full list of course offerings across disciplines and universities or to enroll in an upcoming course, visit Coursera.org.
Coursera is on a mission to change the world by educating millions of people by offering classes from top universities and professors online for free. Coursera's comprehensive education platform combines mastery-based learning principles with video lectures, interactive content and a global community of peers, offering students from around the world a unique online learning experience. Coursera has partnered with top-tier universities to provide courses across a broad range of disciplines, including medicine, literature, history and computer science, among others. Coursera is backed by leading venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and New Enterprise Associates. For more information, visit Coursera.org.