OCW OpenCourseWare: Givers gain

Making their courses available on the web does not discourage enrollment in participating universities… and anyone has access to content from world-class institutions.

Think of the goodwill this generates. An illustration of givers gain.

It sounds like a Utopian vision – a high-quality, free education for everyone – but that’s precisely what MIT and other prestigious universities are doing by participating in the The OpenCourseWare movement, a movement that puts all coursework online for anyone to peruse (…).

OpenCourseWare (OCW) is a type of intellectual philanthropy. Students don’t have to register for classes but only need to log on to more than 1,800 potential courses at 12 universities who provide the course materials such as syllabi, video or audio lectures, notes, homework assignments, illustrations. Contrary to what one might think, giving away their content has not discouraged enrollment to the universities.

The OpenCourseWare movement begun at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2002 and has now spread to some 120 other universities worldwide. (ZDNet Education via Christian Science Monitor)

Links: Open Courseware Consortium, Wikipedia entry on OpenCourseWare