The Market for MOOCs? Public Universities!

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Image Credit: Mathieu Plourde

May 30, 2013;Chronicle of Higher Education

Although another round of universities signing agreements with Coursera is hardly newsworthy anymore, this one is very different. Ten public university systems, including those in New York, Tennessee, Colorado, Kentucky, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Georgia, have signed contracts to offer “guided” or “adopted” Coursera courses to their students. What this means in practical terms is that these public university systems have agreed to either create their own material using Coursera’s expertise or, perhaps most intriguingly, have joined the ranks of San Jose State in licensing courses created at other institutions from Coursera.

It is this licensing model that has struck a nerve among many faculty members, as many see it as a mechanism for consolidation and budget cuts across higher education.—Michelle Shumate