- Microsoft will serve as the first corporate partner to offer MOOCs through EdX, the nonprofit MOOC collaboration between MIT and Harvard.
- The free courses, which cover such programs as C#, SQL, TypeScript, Office 365, and Bootstrap, will start at the end of March, and enrollment is open now.
- EdX expects millions of people around the world to benefit from the partnership with Microsoft, gaining new technical skills to further their IT careers.
The partnership between Microsoft and edX follows closely behind an announcement from the White House about a new initiative to bring employers together with higher education institutions to offer high-tech job skills training. With its MOOCs, edX is giving people the opportunity to move ahead with their own skill-building online. The courses will feature interactive coding, assessments, and exercises as students become experts in new programming languages and web development skills.
While the classes are free, students can get specialized credentials upon completion by paying a fee. As employers better figure out how to assess credentials like these, or Mozilla badges become more popular, students may increasingly turn to flexible courses for skill-building, leaving brick-and-mortar schools behind.