Stanford prof founds online university

A friend sent me this story from The Chronicle for Higher Education. A Stanford professor (also a “Google Fellow”) has left his tenured position to found an online university, along with another professor from the University of Virginia. It looks like the first courses are in the computer sciences and apparently they are delivering technical expertise on programming robotic cars and building your own search engine.

While we are all grappling with ways to use the expanding array of online educational technologies, I wonder how their video-oriented method would work for courses that combine cultural theory with critical thinking. I look forward to comments from SCT faculty members.

Here is a link to the site for the university, called Udacity.



Chronicle Review: Selected Essays from an Issue on Online Learning

How Technology Can Improve Online Learning  By Robert W. Mendenhall
The president of an online university says the quality of education is largely independent of the mode of delivery.

A Social Network Is a Learning Network  By Derek Bruff
When students write for one another, or even for the world, they produce authentic expressions of what they’ve absorbed in class.

The Myth of the Tech-Savvy Student  By Ron Tanner
Why wouldn’t we educate students in sophisticated uses of the Internet, which commands an increasing amount of the world’s time and attention?

Why ‘Digital Natives’ Aren’t Necessarily Digital Learners  By Brian Cowan
Proponents of the new learning technologies ignore the human side of using them. Just because we can use something doesn’t mean we should.