Andhra Pradesh's students to get access to 1,000 free courses as govt, edX ink pact

Terming the pact a game-changer for higher education in the State, Jagan pointed out that the free courses will help poor students, and create abundant jobs for them.
MoU between the State government and edX was signed in the presence of Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy. Education Minister Botcha Satyanarayana and APSCHE chief K Hemachandra Reddy were also present
MoU between the State government and edX was signed in the presence of Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy. Education Minister Botcha Satyanarayana and APSCHE chief K Hemachandra Reddy were also present

VIJAYAWADA: The State government on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with edX, an e-learning platform that offers massive online open courses (MOOC) from over 170 universities, including the top four institutions of the world: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard, Oxford, and Cambridge.

The partnership will enable college students from Andhra Pradesh to access over 1,000 courses from various disciplines, including computer science, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), arts and commerce for free of cost. On successful completion, they will get a certificate from the university or institution, which offered the course.

Principal Secretary (higher education) J Shyamala Rao and edX founder and CEO Anant Agarwal signed the MoU in the presence of Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. Terming the pact a game-changer for higher education in the State, Jagan pointed out that the free courses will help poor students, and create abundant jobs for them.

Stating that the MoU will help overcome the scarcity of expert faculty and lead to great changes in learning and teaching of higher education, Jagan emphasised the need to redesign and restructure syllabi in all main courses such as engineering, medicine and commerce. He reiterated that a board should be constituted for monitoring the process of restructuring the curriculum. Lauding the Chief Minister for his vision, edX CEO expressed happiness over signing the pact.

“Irrespective of the students’ background, the CM’s vision will provide them with access to the best courses from the best universities the world over. This is true democratisation of learning through technology,” he opined. As per the MoU, edX will work with the Andhra Pradesh State Council of Higher Education (APSCHE) department and evolve a roadmap for amplifying existing university courses.

Anant Agarwal will also advise the officials on curriculum design, creation of new verticals, revamping of existing courses and innovation in education for re-skilling and upskilling students. Education Minister Botcha Satyanarayana, Higher Education Council Chairman Prof K Hemachandra Reddy, principal secretary (school education) Praveen Prakash and representatives of edX were present.

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