Penn State will begin to offer massive open online course (MOOC) classes through Coursera to provide students access to Penn State through the internet, according to a press release from Penn State News.
"Penn State will be part of a movement that can provide broader access to higher education," said Penn State President Rodney A. Erickson in the release. "This partnership offers us an opportunity to not only open educational doors to people who may not otherwise have an opportunity, but to also showcase the innovative work of our faculty and their courses."
The program will provide five free courses: Introduction to Art; Maps and the Geospatial Revolution; Creativity, Innovation and Change; Energy, the Environment and Our Future; and Epidemics: the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases, the press release said.
The courses will be taught by Penn State faculty members and will enhance Penn State’s established online presence, the World Campus, the press release said.
“This partnership -- which is really about faculty innovation -- will enable Penn State to test Coursera’s robust learning platform to engage thousands more students worldwide,” Craig Weidemann, vice president for Penn State Outreach, and a partner in the University's MOOC exploration, said.
The program will allow both high school students exploring potential majors, as well as students looking to continue their education, the press release said.
These courses will give educational access to people who otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity while also showcasing the work of Penn State faculty, the press release said.