The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is offering its first professional learning course tackling the ins and outs of Big Data, a subject near and dear to educators and technologists hoping analytics can improve teaching, learning, and campus spending.

mit-big-data-educationThe Big Data course will be taught starting March 4 by MIT professors from the Computer Science Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at the School of Engineering.

The fee for this online four week open-sourced course is $495. MIT does not consider it a MOOC. It is offered as a professional development opportunity for those who want become subject matter experts on Big Data that will solve their company’s technological challenges.

Those who complete MIT’s Big Data class could use the subsequent certificate as a resume booster.

The course, “Tackling The Challenges of Big Data,” is not considered a massive open online course (MOOC) because the preferred participants are expected to have a bachelor’s degree in computer science or at least three years of technical work experience, said Kate McCary, an MIT spokeswoman. The class wasn’t designed for a general audience.

The Big Data course is open to technology experts worldwide.

“Big data technologies will help us better understand and improve the world around us,” said Daniela Rus, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT.

This course is the first under the university’s Online X Programs, the pilot program developed by a MIT and Harvard partnership called edX, a not-for-profit venture that has drawn students from around the world since its 2012 launch.

The program offers professional training and educational courses to technical professionals and technical managers, McCary said. It’s goal is to give companies the opportunity to train their employees on the topic of big data, encouraging new conversations and innovation.

“Tackling the Challenges of Big Data” is the first MIT online training program designed specifically for professionals who might not be able to participate on location at MIT.


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