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With Free Web Courses, Wharton Seeks Edge in Traditional Programs

30 Apr

B-School Continues MOOCs Push Ahead of Rivals

The Wharton School is feeling bullish about its MOOC efforts.
[ Associated Press ]

By Melissa Korn

Nearly two years into its grand experiment with massive open online courses, University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School is feeling bullish.

The school introduced its first MOOC, as they are known, in 2012, setting out on an ambitious plan to reach millions of new students. The free classes, in subjects like financial accounting and marketing, don’t carry any credit toward a Wharton degree, but they have given about 1.1 million participants a taste of academic life at the elite institution and a chance to learn basic business skills.

It’s perhaps the most coordinated effort at any business school. Wharton will have 15 MOOCs on the Coursera Inc. education-technology platform by year-end, including four “Foundation Series” courses introduced last fall and modeled on sections of its first-year M.B.A. curriculum.

The school is still learning how best to translate its on-campus offerings to the Web, but officials say the venture has already strengthened the brand and delivered an edge over competitors in an area that could ultimately upend traditional M.B.A. programs.

For now, other B-schools aren’t moving into MOOCs with quite the same enthusiasm. Columbia Business School doesn’t have any MOOCs, while University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business runs five. And Harvard Business School’s newest online offerings are neither massive nor open, with admission standards and a price tag.

[ Full article available at The Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303948104579533810102989536 ]

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Posted by on April 30, 2014 in MOOCs in the News

 

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