Friday, September 21, 2012

Course Builder Brings Google into Online Education

Google is taking a step into online education with the release of open-source software called Course Builder. According to an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the search giant has talked to edX, the partnership between Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California at Berkeley that is already offering free massive open online courses. Peter Norvig, the director of research at Google, told The Chronicle it has also reached out to Stanford University.

“We’re close with Stanford—Coursera and Udacity both came out of Stanford,” Norvig said. “They’re working on their own open-source project, and they’re also interested in working with us. I think schools are experimenting and they don’t know quite yet what they want to do.”

Google attracted 155,000 registered students during the summer with its Power Searching software.  Course Builder is designed to package the software and technology used in Power Searching to create online courses that can include lessons, student activities, and assessments.

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