Degreed wants to make online courses count

Over the past few years, millions around the world have signed up for free online courses to date, CNN Money reports. In theory, such courses can give anyone with internet access a taste of the Ivy League. But despite its popularity, employers are slow to acknowledge online education’s value. In the same way that trust and reputation buoy a company’s stock, education is also based on brand value. “The only language we have to communicate our educational accomplishments to each other is all baked into the formal degree,” says David Blake, co-founder of San Francisco-based startup Degreed, which bills itself as “The New Degree for the New World.” But a certificate you received in your early twenties isn’t necessarily the best indicator of what you actually know. Launched in January 2013, Degreed is trying to address this problem by giving a score to university degrees and online courses alike. If you graduate from Harvard with an economics degree, for example, you’ll earn 3,787 points. If you complete a programming course at Codecademy, that gives you 13 points. Points are tallied and stored on user profiles on Degreed.

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