Udacity & Georgia Tech MOOMS (M.S. Computer Science online)

Inside Higher Ed has a long article on this remarkable new venture – “based on interviews and documents, including some that the university provided to Inside Higher Ed following an open records request.” There are 22 pages of internal Georgia Tech docs referenced. Example: 

“It is an experiment that no other institution of our caliber has embarked on (yet!) but everyone is talking about moving in this direction, so if we want to do it, we should do it right away,” the report, produced in late February, said. “There is an opportunity to be a leader rather than a follower if we act quickly and thoughtfully.”

There is a glimpse of the financial projections as well:

The Georgia Tech program will have four enrollment tracks for students. Enrollment starts in January, though the first year will feature a small test run of several hundred paying students drawn mostly from the military and the corporate world, particularly AT&T.

Georgia Tech and Udacity expect the program to cost about $3.1 million in its first year. With a $2 million one-time sponsorship from AT&T and about $1.3 million in tuition and fees, Georgia Tech and Udacity
expect to split $240,060 in gains at the end of the first year.

In the second year, without AT&T’s large subsidy, Georgia Tech and Udacity plan to spend $7.5 million and scrape out gains of just $14,848 for the whole year.

By the third year, when the program is expected to be running at full steam, Georgia Tech and Udacity expect to spend $14.3 million on the program but bring in $19.1 million in revenue — for a total gain of about $4.7 million.

Georgia Tech will receive 60 percent of the revenue and Udacity the rest. The money to Georgia Tech will flow through its research corporation. Professors and the computing college both stand to gain from the effort. A professor will receive $20,000 for creating a course and $10,000 for delivering the content — meaning most professors will receive $30,000 per course. Professors will receive a royalty of $2,500 each time the course is offered again.

The posted Georgia Tech document is a wonderful source of insights into how the new degree program will actually operate.

Who’s afraid of a MOOC?: on being education-y and course-ish

Here's a very informative post by Greg Downey @GregDowney1 on the Neuroanthropology PLOS Blog. Did you know about all the MOOC developments in Australia? Such as the Open Universities Australia? Well I didn't, but am going to follow their work closely. Greg is one of the prime movers. A sample:

(…) My project was chosen to be the first cab off the rank at Macquarie after I pointed out at a panel discussion last semester during ‘Learning and Teaching Week’ that the technology made opening classrooms electronically inevitable. At the time, I argued that if the University didn’t promote open classroom efforts, the academic staff were going to start opening up our classrooms on our own. Either do it with us, or stand by as it happens without you. Anthropology (as well as a lot of other disciplines) wants to be free, or at the very least we are inexorably leaking onto the internet.

The leaking lecture hall

Web 2.0 opportunities are simply making it too easy and cheap to put teaching materials online. Our universities are often forcing us to tape lectures, generate electronic syllabi and provide access to our students already, so many of us are asking ourselves, why, after we put so much energy into lectures, slides, student readings, and the like for our classes, should we not share these much more widely. We have watched as lecture-like presentations – most notably, TED conference videos, but also iTunes U, Slideshare, and the like – have grown as a genre through podcasting and other avenues. There are copyright issues, and many of us are nervous about what will happen when as these materials become public, but enough of us are ready to dive into the deep end that the process is only likely to accelerate.

More…

 

Udacity announces a MOOC Pathway Towards US College Credit

This is exciting – starting with three courses at San Jose State (via Storify). Summary from Udacity Newsletter.

 To start off the New Year right, we just launched a pilot program that makes U.S. college credit possible with some MOOCs. As Sebastian Thrun announced in his blog post: “Udacity is thrilled to announce a partnership with San Jose State University to pilot three courses—Visualizing Intermediate AlgebraCollege Algebra, and Elementary Statistics—available online at an affordable tuition rate and for college credit. To my knowledge, this is the first time a MOOC has been offered for credit and purely online.” To see the play by play, check out our Storify page on this announcement.

 
These credits are accepted in the California State University system, and in the case of Statistics, in the University of California system as well. All three courses launch January 30th for the pilot period and are open for enrollment. Please note, as this is a pilot, in order to receive credit, you will have to enroll via San Jose State University first to be accepted into the pilot classes. Of course you can always take the classes for free (but not for college credit) by enrolling directly on Udacity.

Sam Romano tells Udacity about landing dream job at Google

Three minute peek into the future of education:

Following the first AI class, Udacity received hundreds of resumes from our students. We passed some of these resumes on to a number of companies. Recently, we heard from Sam Romano, who just landed a job at Google in Pittsburg, PA. During his job training in Palo Alto, CA, Sam took took the time to sit down with Udacity and tell us about how his experience in class helped him get the job he’s always wanted. Thanks Sam, and good luck at Google!

If you are interested in having your resume shared with Udacity’s growing list of employers, login to Udacity and fill out your profile page!