MOOC Expert Committee launches to advance online learning

Global members span nonprofit, academic, governmental, business worlds

WASHINGTON — October 6, 2015 — Online courses have the potential to expand quality education, provide scientific and cultural content, and offer career training and professional development worldwide. To this end, a public-private partnership has formed to harness the power of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), which are available to anyone with no enrollment caps or application process.

The MOOC Expert Committee is a rallying platform of professionals from different industries, organizations and countries working to advance learning through MOOCs. The Committee will create a community, provide space for dialogue, exchange ideas and innovative practices, showcase technologies and underscore pedagogical aspects of online learning around the world.

Aiming to identify educational trends, the Committee will promote new technologies and eventually advise policy makers on effective open education endeavors. Members of the Committee bring complementary perspectives on how to design, implement, monitor and evaluate MOOC-based programs around the globe.

MOOC Expert Committee members include:

IREX — An international nonprofit organization that promotes just, prosperous and inclusive societies by developing leaders, promoting quality education and access to information, and strengthening communities and institutions that advance positive change.

CourseTalk — The largest source for student-powered reviews of online courses and MOOCs. With more than 75,000 reviews of 40,000 courses, CourseTalk supplies online learners with all the tools they need to design their educational path. CourseTalk is powered by AcademixDirect, an education marketing organization.

U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)  — The lead U.S. government agency that works to end extreme global poverty and enable resilient, democratic societies to realize their potential.

Telefónica Educación Digital — Part of Telefónica, the global leader in telecommunications and technology services. Telefónica Educación Digital specializes in the design and implementation of state-of-the-art online training and knowledge management solutions for corporations, governments, institutions and education organizations across the world.

Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) — A member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group. The IIC promotes private-sector development in Latin America and the Caribbean with a focus on SMEs. The Corporation provides companies with financing in the form of equity investments, loans and guarantees, as well as with innovative technical assistance, advisory services and knowledge products.

Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA) at the University of Washington — A multidisciplinary research group that explores the design, use and effects of information and communication technologies in communities facing social and economic challenges.

The Committee will work in consortium with the Advancing MOOCs for Development Initiative, a two-year, $1.55 million project funded by USAID and CourseTalk to investigate and address the potential of MOOCs in Colombia, the Philippines and South Africa.

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For media inquiries, contact Shea Drefs, CourseTalk communications and marketing associate, at shea@coursetalk.com.

For other questions on the MOOC Expert Committee or the Advancing MOOCs for Development Initiative, contact Scott Andersen of IREX at sandersen@irex.org.