University of Maryland University College to offer credit for MOOCs

The crediting process for MOOCs would be “fairly simple” for a  university like UMUC, she said.

“Very traditional schools who assume that students will get the degrees from them from beginning to end, it’s going to be hard for them to figure out MOOCs fit into what they do,” Davis said. “But schools used to non-traditional and transfer credit, it makes it simpler.”

The university will offer credit for the learning obtained through six MOOCs provided by the platforms Coursera and Udacity. The MOOCs are all introductory math and science courses that have already been evaluated and recommended for credit by the American Council for Education.

In order to earn the credits, students will have to prove their competency by taking standardized exams at a test center. UMUC will also allow students to earn credit through its portfolio review process, Bob Ludwig, the university’s assistant vice president of media relations, said.

While students will have to pay whatever fees Coursera and Udacity charge for testing their competency, UMUC will not charge any additional money for earning the credits.

“Nobody knows what’s going to happen with MOOCs,” Davis said. “A lot of schools are trying to get their arms around what they mean. But we’re excited that there’s another way for students to learn and that we can accommodate it.”

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