Online’s Range Getting Wider and Deeper as Stanford’s Course Offerings Take Advantage of New Technology
As new MOOCs are made available to the world at large, professors innovate on campus to make Stanford-only courses more exciting and effective.
Around 20 Stanford courses will be taught entirely or partially online this spring. According to the university’s Office of the Vice Provost for Online Learning, some courses have been taught before, others are brand new; some are entirely for public consumption, while others are reserved for on-campus students.
While at first online courses tended to emphasize computer science and engineering, the offerings now include courses from political science, the humanities and public health, among many other fields.
“It’s great to see more of last year’s faculty interest come to fruition this year in new course experiences,” said John Mitchell, vice provost for online learning. “Not only are we seeing new approaches on increasingly sophisticated online platforms, but additional faculty from a broader range of academic fields are finding new ways to connect with their students here on campus.”
As in previous quarters, courses are offered on a variety of platforms, including the open-source Class2Go, developed by a team of Stanford engineers; Coursera, founded by Stanford computer science professors currently on leave; Venture Lab, founded by faculty and graduate students from the Department of Management Science and Engineering; and older, more established platforms such as Stanford’s CourseWork, iTunes U and YouTube. Unlike many other universities, Stanford allows professors to choose whichever platform best suits their pedagogical purposes.
MOOCs for everyone