The deepening reach of the movement to develop free Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, is taking a new path with two historically Black public universities seeking partnerships with Udacity, one of the leading MOOC platform organizations.
One of the schools, the Baltimore-based Morgan State University, reports that it is close to completing an agreement with Udacity that would enable school faculty members to develop courses for delivery through the company’s MOOC platform. The agreement, which Morgan State officials expect to announce publicly by late January, is also supposed to allow Morgan State students the option of earning academic credit for MOOCs taken through Udacity.
“We are moving forward toward a partnership with Udacity through (assistance from) the Thurgood Marshall College Fund,” says Morgan State University president David Wilson. “Morgan (State University) is a serious player in higher education in this country, and we expect to also be at the table to participate in MOOCs and to learn from it.”
Wilson says university officials will announce the details of an inaugural MOOC that a Morgan State faculty member will produce with Udacity course developers at the company’s headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif. Wilson declined to identify the faculty member and the subject matter of the inaugural MOOC, explaining that the school and Udacity are still working out agreement details.
Wilson noted “the course itself will probably be ready (to be delivered to students) no later than the summer of 2013.” He says that Morgan State faculty members will be prepared to monitor and assess student consumption of other courses on the Udacity platform by the fall of 2013.