Some platforms like Edx Coursera or try to change the college offering free online courses taught by the great universities

The future of free online education is here. Short courses tailored to the needs of the market, made ​​by university professors and renowned practical activities for students online are starting to appear. They are to be found in some platforms as Coursera, Audacity , the Open Course Ware, Edx and many others, enabling anyone, anywhere in the world, whether or not college, get trained by academics without paying a penny.

Many American universities like Harvard, Berkeley, Princeton, Washington, Florida, Michigan and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology already offer this possibility. Thousands of free courses on subjects as varied as technology, computer science, biology, mathematics, medicine, business, humanities and sciences of music are available. Some universities in other countries like England, France, Australia, Canada, Israel or even Spain have embraced this initiative also making available to students many educational materials in open.


The method is different according to the college concerned. Some are stipulated date of start and end of the course. You must register by providing your name and email to gain access to information. Once this is done, the student has access to the course page, which will use up periodically materials and short videos in which a teacher explains the relevant agenda. At the end of each lesson, enrollees can do some online test to gauge their knowledge.

Another method is to be implemented in some Spanish universities UNED through Open Courses . No start date or end and the student has no opportunity to interact with teachers. “There is a distance education service,” says the Web Portal of the UNED open courses. Are all audiovisual materials, glossaries, manuals and exercises to acquire knowledge of the course available to students so that it starts when you want. No need to register and the student does not receive any certificate.

An alternative to the formation of payment?

Coursera President said the aim is to educate “students billion” worldwide. This is a real revolution. This training model quick, concrete and massive access is transforming the concept of formal understood so far. Currently more than one million eight hundred thousand people have signed up already Coursera platform. Instead of offering a theoretical and comprehensive, covering several years and requires the student’s presence, your bet is a formula hybrid virtual classroom and self-education : content open for students to explore and delve into the issues most interest and in-depth teaching of the fundamentals of the course. All, however, accompanied by the feedback of the new communication networks.

The free online university does not seem destined to end the tuition fees, but yes to transform their very conception. In fact, open education is limited to very specific issues (such as introductory courses or specialties) to provide greater curricular knowledge and experience to students, but to get the valid certificate of course you do need to pay, although the difference Price is very considerable with large enrollments of universities. Following the model of content marketing used by many Internet companies, this system would eliminate the high costs that have to start studying students and providing them with material value classes (free content), thus trying to obtain benefits through marketing the right to review and issuance of title (premium content).

This new business model in training, trying to move into the world of university education the same transformation they have experienced other sectors such as music, film, publishing , is part of the debate on the bubble of college loans in the United States and the progressive increase in the price of tuition in traditional education.