Five Coursera MOOCs were declared worthy to earn students college credits upon completion. The American Council for Education has given universities and colleges the authority to decide whether to allow their students to take those subjects online or traditionally.
The American Council for Education (ACE) has announced that several of the massive open online courses (MOOCs) offered through Coursera are worthy to earn college credit. The council has emphasized that five of those courses have almost the same quality as similar classes that are offered and facilitated in traditional classrooms. It stated that those would earn more academic respectability if facilitated with anti-cheating measures.
Those courses are the first ever MOOCs to be declared eligible for credit. Universities and colleges would decide whether to allow their students to replace corresponding traditional courses with their counterpart online subjects. This is expected to be warmly welcomed by students who prefer to take lower-cost online courses.
ACE is recommending those MOOCs but it is still up to universities and colleges to decide whether credit would be given for passing those. If educational institutions would readily accept this recommendation, it would be considered a giant leap for online education in the US.
Presently, free MOOCs are provided through Coursera to online students. However, those learners do not receive any college credit for taking the subjects. ACE’s latest approval is set to change this. Consequently, more students would be given the opportunity to take identity-verified course modules and proctored exams through the program. It is estimated that every course could only take $100 to $190 to complete.
Two of those approved MOOCs for college credit have been developed and offered by Duke University—Bioelectricity: A Quantitative Approach and Introduction to Genetics and Evolution. Two other approved courses are Algebra and Pre-Calculus from the University of California at Irvine. Meanwhile, the University of Pennsylvania facilitates Calculus: Single Variable.
This approval is seen as part of ACE’s plans to fully understand the impact of free online courses to modern academics. The council is aiming to examine long-term prospects of MOOCs. It wants to determine how those courses could increase learning productivity and at the same time improve college curricula.
Coursera, a for-profit organization, currently offers up to 217 online courses taught at about 33 universities and colleges. Students usually take subjects for free. However, it collects about $30 to $99 if a student wants to take a completion certificate of any class under standard surveillance. Additional $60 to $90 is charged if a student wants to take a final examination proctored through Webcam. A part of those fees go to partner schools or universities that offer the subjects.