Feature: From the School House

EdX to Offer Exams at the End of Their MOOCs

Author: Adi Gaskell
Published: November 18, 2012 at 7:15 am

learning at workI'm a massive fan of the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) that are taking the world by storm.  Around a million people have already signed up for free courses from leading universities via the likes of Coursera or edX.

Something that was considered a drawback of the MOOCs however was that whilst they made it easy to acquire knowledge, they didn't come with any certification to prove that fact.

That may now be changing.  Leading MOOC provider edX have teamed up with Pearson VUE to offer students the possibility of taking a certified exam at the end of their short course.

edX, which offers courses from universities such as Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, announced the partnership today via their website.

"Our online learners who want the flexibility to provide potential employers with an independently validated certificate may now choose to take the course exam at a proctored test site," said Anant Agarwal, president of edX. "This option enhances the value of our courses in the real world, helps us maintain our goal of making high-quality education both accessible and practical and thus is a natural evolution of ed's core philosophy of transforming lives through education."

Pearson VUE are already a global leader in computer-based testing, and run testing facilities around the world for exams such as the GMAT MBA entrance exam.  They operate over 450 test centres in 110 countries.

The centres have agreed to verify the identity of the student and administer the tests to prove their knowledge.

Examinees using the Pearson VUE centers will take the same rigorous exam as online learners and will be charged a modest fee for the proctoring service. EdX will offer the option to test takers for one of its online courses this Fall.

Robert Whelan, president and chief executive officer of Pearson VUE said, "We are thrilled to collaborate with edX and help its learners improve their employability and career prospects. Pearson VUE is also pleased to help edX protect the integrity of their courses by providing the option of proctored exams."


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Article Author: Adi Gaskell

A writer on management issues for publications such as Professional Manager, CMI, HRM Today, Business Works and Technorati. I also cover social media for Social Media Today, DZone and Social Business News.

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