Introduction to Java Programming Course Reaches 500K Enrollees

IBL News | New York

The Introduction to Java Programming free course on is about the set a milestone by reaching an enrollment of 500,000 people, IBL News learned. Today, in the course, there are over 497,000 enrolled from 210 countries. The course is developed in English and Spanish.

In conversation with IBL, Carlos Delgado-Kloos, Lead Professor in the class and VP of Digital Education at the University of Carlos III of Madrid, explained that he achieved that impact by implementing instructors’ team-work practices, using of LTI tools and adding pedagogical tips, among other techniques.

“Cloud computing is a ripe technology and MOOCs are the consequence,” he stated.

Carlos Delgado-Kloos, who was recently recognized with the Open Education Consortium award, elaborates on how MOOCs can empower learners in developing countries [see the interview below].


A Spanish University Builds a Futuristic Eco-Campus with Outside Classrooms

IBL News | Madrid, Spain

The University of Malaga, in Spain, is building a futuristic eco-campus for students to take classes outside.

Spanning a surface area of 52 acres, this innovative campus will include a green infrastructure suitable for everyday activities, such as studying, meeting and reading. The goal is to improve the climatic comfort and connectivity within an educational setting.

A Madrid-based architectural firm called Ecosistema Urbano is designing this interactive infrastructure after winning in 2016 a public contract to transform an old campus into an environmentally-friendly and digitally connected space.

It will be a geological garden in the works, a tropical garden, and a digital water curtain.

By using high-tech capabilities, learners will be able to visualize real-time information and manipulate physical aspects of public space in an almost futuristic fashion, as shown in the picture below.

Outdoor comfort will improve through solar-powered climate conditioning systems such as evaporative cooling and geothermal air circulation.

Naturally, everything will run on renewable energy systems.

Over 1,000 Students Will Graduate from Georgia Tech’s Online Master in Computer Science

IBL News | New York

The recognizable OMSCS (Online Master of Science in Computer Science) from Georgia Tech continues its successful march.

“Right now we have over 9,000 students and so far over 2,400 graduated; over 1,000 graduating this year,” Zvi Galil, creator of the Master and former John P. Imlay, Jr. Dean of Computing and Professor told IBL News. “This number might reach 1,500 this academic year and might reach 2,000 in a year or two.”

OMSCS continues to be the largest master’s program in computer science in the nation.

Launched in January 2014 with 380 students, it meant to achieve from the beginning, “a revolutionary shift from the prevailing paradigm of higher education, in which a brand is bolstered by exclusion and high tuition fees,” Galil said. [In the picture above]

As it was conceived, the OMSCS keeps on tuition affordable – less than $7,000 for the full degree, payable by course, rather than $40,000 for a public on-campus program, or $70,000 or more in a private university.

OMSCS’ growth has been phenomenal, and its success has inspired similar programs at other universities. By 2019 spring term it offered a total of 30 courses in 4 specializations to 8,662 students.

Georgia Tech offers undergraduates the choice to enroll in an online version of an introductory computing courseIntroduction to Computing with Python on edX.



Learning At Scale | October 2019: Starbucks, Microsoft, MIT, Educause, 2U, AWS, Google, Automattic…

Newsletter format  |  Click here to subscribe ]


OCTOBER 2019  –  NEWSLETTER #27  |  More breaking news at IBL News  |  New! Noticias en Español


Courses at Scale

• Over 3,000 Starbucks Employees Have Earned their Bachelor’s Degree through ASU Online

• Microsoft Launches a Series of 44 Short Videos to Learn Python on YouTube

• 99% of MIT Undergrads Have Taken an MITx Class – Impressive Numbers After Two Decades


Higher Ed

• The 10 IT Issues Higher Ed Leaders Are Focusing on, According to Educause

• MIT’s Provost Will Impulse the Open Sharing of Data, Software, and Educational Materials

• The Power of Data and Analytics Can Save Higher Education, Says Educause, AIR and NACUBO

• A Research Group Identifies Over 700K Unique Credentials in the United States



• Automattic, the Company Behind WordPress, Valued at $3 Billion After Its Last Funding

• 2U Announces a Deal with RIT to Deliver an Online Master’s Degree in Architecture

• AWS Expands its Partnerships with Institutions to Offer Degree Programs in Cloud Computing

• The Hamilton Education Program Online Will Expand to All Schools



• Google and CompTIA Create a Dual Credential for Learners Seeking for Entry-Level Jobs in IT

Google Expands Its IT Support Certificate Program to 100 Community Colleges


Epstein’s Scandal

• MIT to Examine Engagement Practices with Gifts and Grants After Epstein’s Donations

• Students at MIT Extend their Protest to Koch and Demand More Resignations

• University of Southern California (USC) Rejected Any Donation from Epstein

• A Professor Denounces the Silence of the Scientific Community on Epstein

Troubled MIT Media Lab Ousts a Longtime Scientist for Sexual Harassment

• MIT Students Vocalize their Concerns and Demand Prof. Seth Lloyd Resignation

• MIT President Will Engage Students on the Issue of Epstein’s Donations and Ties to the Institute


2019 Upcoming Events

• Education Calendar  –  OCTOBER  | NOVEMBER  | DECEMBER | JAN – JUNE 2020


This newsletter about online education at scale is a monthly report compiled by IBL News and IBL Education. If you enjoy what you read please consider forwarding it to spread the word. Click here to subscribe.

Read the latest IBL Newsletter on Online Education at Scale  |  Archive of Open edX Newsletters

edX, Coursera, Udacity & Platforms | October 2019: Schoology, Canvas, Google Classroom, Docebo…

Newsletter format  |  Click here to subscribe ]

OCTOBER 2019 – NEWSLETTER #21  |  More breaking news at IBL News  |  New! Noticias en Español



• edX Cancels Its Annual Partners Conference Scheduled in Hong Kong Due to Safety Concerns

• A Practical Course on edX to Learn How to Deploy an IBM Watson-Based Chatbot

• edX Announces Its Eleventh Degree: A Master’s in Electrical and Computer Engineering

• What’s Ahead? Unbundled Degrees, Micro-Bachelors, and Stackable, Employer-Endorsed Credentials



• Coursera Will Pay the Tuition Cost for Degree Programs to their Full-Time Employees

• Coursera’s Latest Low-Priced Online Master’s: A Russian Degree in Data Science

• Coursera Offers Its 3,600-Course Catalog to Non-Affiliated Universities

• Coursera for Campus Is Not an Alternative LMS to Blackboard, Canvas, and Moodle, Says Maggioncalda

• Coursera Creates a Database of 250+ Top Instructors Available to the Media

• Learners at Coursera, Canvas and Blackboard Will Be Able to Ask Alexa for Course Updates



• Udacity Issues Three Programs to Prepare Developers in C+++, Blockchain, and Data Streaming Technologies

• Udacity Will Fund 100,000 Scholarships As Part of the Pledge to America’s Workers

• Udacity Claims a Record Growth in the Business of the Courses to Upskill Employees

• Google and Udacity Rework Courses to Learn Kotlin, the Language for Android Apps


Learning Platforms

• Schoology Acquired by PowerSchool – A New Giant with 65 Million Users

• Docebo Learning Platform’s Stock Dropped 28% after Raising C$75 Million on its IPO

• Canvas Integrates into Its LMS a Tool to Show Evidence of Students’ Achievements

• Google Classroom, One of the World’s Top LMS: 40M Users In Five Years



• The Learning with MOOCs Conference Honored Innovators in Online Education

• A Conference to Find Viable Business Models to Commercialize Open Source Software


2019 Upcoming Events

• Education Calendar  –  OCTOBER  |  NOVEMBER  |  DECEMBER  |  JAN – JUNE 2020


This newsletter about Open edX, edX, Coursera, Udacity, and other platforms is a monthly report compiled by the IBL News staff, in collaboration with IBL Education, a New York City-based company that has built the IBL Platform. It includes AI analytics-driven, revenue-oriented learning ecosystems, and courses with Open edX and other educational software. 

Read the latest IBL Newsletter on Online Education at Scale  |  Archive of Open edX Newsletters

The Learning with MOOCs Conference Honored Innovators in Online Education

IBL News | Milwaukee, WI

IEEE’s Learning with MOOCS awarded Anant Agarwal, CEO at edX, for his “meritorious service for outstanding contribution”. Meanwhile, Dr. Russ Meier, professor at Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE), received recognition as Chair of the conference.

Both scholars were awarded during the sixth edition of the Learning with MOOCs Conference this week in Milwaukee, WI.

[In the picture above, Manuel Castro, IEEE fellow and organizer of the conference, with Anant Agarwal on the left]

Two universities were honored for the Best Paper Award:

  • Improving MOOC quality using learning analytics tools, Jeffrey S. Cross, Tokio Tech, Japan
  • F-Lingo: Integrating lexical feature identification into MOOC platforms for learning professional and academic English, Alannah Fitzgerald, The University of Waikato, New Zeland

“There is a vibrant community of investigators researching and the future is very bright,” said Russ Meier, who read the 37 papers presented at the conference.

He summarized his conclusions of the event in the video below.

[Disclosure: IBL was one of the sponsors of the conference, along with Future Learn, edX, Class Central and the Milwaukee School of Engineering]

Schoology Acquired by PowerSchool – A New Giant with 65 Million Users

IBL News | New York

PowerSchool, an ed-tech provider on K-12, announced yesterday an agreement to acquire Schoology, a leading learning management system used by 60.000 schools and 20 million students, with a 17% percent market share. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This acquisition, if approved, will result in a dominant company among K-12 schools and districts, which will leave behind competitors such as Google Classroom, Canvas, and Moodle.

PowerSchool, roughly used by 45 million learners, has acquired eight companies since 2015. Schoology would be PowerSchool’s second purchase of a learning management system (LMS) after it acquired Haiku Learning in 2016.

 “Teachers have shared that they need more time and tools to provide individual learning paths for every student,” said Hardeep Gulati, CEO of PowerSchool.

“With the scale and investment we will get being part of PowerSchool, we can further advance what is possible in education, and take Schoology to a whole new level,” said Schoology CEO and Co-Founder, Jeremy Friedman.


EdX Cancels Its Annual Partners Conference Scheduled in Hong Kong Due to Safety Concerns

IBL News | New York

The annual edX Global Forum partners conference, scheduled this year in Hong Kong for November 11-13, was canceled due to “safety concerns related to local circumstances”, organizers say.

The anti-government protests that have rocked Hong Kong for months show no sign of dying down and given this situation edX prioritized the safety of attendants. “We want to keep people safe,” an edX representative said to IBL News.

The edX organization and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), who was the host of the event, mutually took the decision.

The 2019 Global Forum won’t take place in any other place. Instead, the MOOC platform is planning to celebrate a Town Hall-style event with its CEO, Anant Agarwal, along with other virtual events.

Over 3,000 Starbucks Employees Have Earned their Bachelor’s Degree through ASU Online

IBL News | New York

The combination of flexible online classes with the discipline of real-work experience has proven to be successful for many learners.

Over 3,000 Starbucks employees have earned their bachelor’s degree at Arizona State University (ASU) while working, the institution announced on the fifth anniversary of its partnership with the coffee giant.

These graduates enrolled in the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, that offers more than 80 undergraduate programs through ASU Online. Employees, called “partners” at Starbucks, are reimbursed for tuition every semester.

The first classes began in mid-October 2014, and today, more than 13,000 Starbucks partners are in this plan.

“Our partnership with Starbucks is the exemplar of how corporations and universities may come together to create real impact at the individual, community and macroeconomic level,” said Philip Regier, University Dean for Educational Initiatives and CEO of EdPlus at ASU.

In addition to Starbucks, ASU has partnered with Uber and Adidas to provide tuition assistance to their employees.

MIT’s Provost Will Impulse the Open Sharing of Data, Software, and Educational Materials

IBL News | New York

An MIT report, published on October 17, urged its community of researchers to increase the open sharing of publications, data, software, and educational materials.

The MIT Open Access task force, convened by Provost Martin Schmidt on July 2017, was charged with exploring how the institute should update and revise current policies. Now, the final recommendations research concludes that openly sharing research and educational materials is key to the MIT mission of advancing knowledge.

The task force also calls for heads of departments, labs, and centers to develop discipline-specific plans to encourage and support open sharing.

“Scholarship serves humanity best when it is available to everyone,” Libraries Director Chris Bourg, co-chair of the task force with Hal Abelson, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science said on MIT News.

In an email to the MIT community, Provost Martin Schmidt announced that he would appoint an implementation team this fall to prioritize and enact the task force’s recommendations. He has asked Chris Bourg to convene and lead this team.

The MIT libraries have already begun working with the departments of Linguistics and Philosophy and Brain and Cognitive Sciences to develop sample plans.