- Nonprofit MOOC provider edX plans to launch courses for teacher professional development and student AP exam prep in collaboration with President Barack Obama's ConnectED initiative.
- The announcement was made during a Wednesday event at the White House that brought together superintendents from all over the nation, and was touted by Obama himself.
- EdX's ConnectED offering will include free "verified" certificates for the associated courses.
EdX already offered the AP prep MOOCs, but the professional development courses and verified certificates are a new development. Of course, those certificates have a time limit. Teachers can earn them for the PD courses on subjects like ed tech, blended learning, and leadership for one year, though that extends to five years if they're in Title I programs or high-need districts. The AP prep certificates will be available for five years, as well.
Ultimately, edX's offering of free verified certificates for professional development is significant because a number of companies offer that sort of training at a price (though that likely includes additional services, as well). Regardless, additional training, especially where the fast-evolving classroom tech front is concerned, is often cited as a major need for many schools and districts. At no cost, there's no reason not to take advantage of it.