Tag Archives: Coursera

EDUKWEST Monday Ristretto

Monday Ristretto: MOOC Managers, Indian EdTech and European Initiatives

To get you up to speed for the week ahead, we will serve you a Monday Ristretto here on EDUKWEST from now on. We pick the most important reads from the past week, put them in a grinder and extract the essential information in a short and punchy brew.

Today we’ve got three shots for you. It’s all about MOOC management, investments in Indian edtech startups and European edtech initiatives.

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On the Ed - Alpha

On the Ed – Alpha – 007 Around the EdTech World in 75 Minutes

This week Chris and I talk edtech news and investment with Dublin-based investor Alan Maguire from Versari Partners.

As always we start the show with our newsflash and give you an overview of this week’s funding stories and other news we think are of interest to have a closer look at. You find all the links to the stories at the end of this post.

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EDUKWEST Sunday Review

Sunday Review for the Week of March 17th 2014

In this week’s Sunday Review we learn about the potential reasons why Coursera is allowed to give access to some of its courses to Iranian students, why VCs tend to get edtech wrong, who owns the rights to a MOOC when the instructor leaves the institution, why students sue Google, how semantic search will improve education, how researchers are chasing pageviews like bloggers and more.

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Kaikeba Chinese MOOC platform

HEDLINE: Uniquedu raised $16.5 million for Chinese MOOC Kaikeba


Uniquedu, the education company behind Chinese MOOC platform Kaikeba has raised a $16.5 million Series A led by Fosun Venture Capital Investment.

Uniquedu had started off as a classic offline education service and launched its IT training focused MOOC platform in August 2013. The company is headquartered in Beijing and has offices in Silicon Valley, Miami and Tokyo.

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Coursera blocks Students

Education for Everyone but – Coursera blocks Students from Iran, Cuba, Syria and Sudan

Editor’s Note: This post has first been published on edcetera – straight talk on edtech.

We believe in connecting people to a great education so that anyone around the world can learn without limits. [...]

We envision a future where everyone has access to a world-class education that has so far been available to a select few. We aim to empower people with education that will improve their lives, the lives of their families, and the communities they live in. [emphasis me]

These are the first paragraphs of Coursera’s About page and from this week on I would suggest some changes as students, or Courserians as they are called, from Sudan, Cuba, Syria and Iran are blocked from accessing the MOOC platform.

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Khan Academy Comcast Partnership

Khan Academy and Comcast Partnership – MOOCs will follow suit

Editor’s Note: This post has first been published on edCetera – straight talk on edtech.

On Monday Comcast announced a partnership with Khan Academy to promote affordable Internet access and free access to quality education to low income families throughout the United States.

Inside the urban tech bubbles people often forget that the devices and high speed Internet access they enjoy are not a commodity for everyone out there. If you remember, part of the reason why Udacity and San Jose State University put their pilot on hold earlier this year was based on the “revelation” that many students could not take part in the MOOCs due to insufficient access to computers and high speed Internet which is essential to stream the video lectures.

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Mo Money Still No Business – ENT #23 July 16th to July 22nd 2012



Course Hero acquires Cardinal Scholars from InstaEDU

After pivoting into an online tutoring service, InstaEDU sold its offline branch Cardinal Scholars to another startup in the education space, Course Hero. This way InstaEDU will be able to entirely focus on the growth of its online services whereas Course Hero can integrate a trusted and apparently working business into its offerings.

via TechCrunch

Wallstreet Institute launches Facebook Game

Pearson owned Wallstreet Institute launched AppGrade, a Facebook game that aims to teach English through adapted articles of the Financial Times. The game is part of WSIs product suite ForToday which includes learning material based on Financial Times articles, classes that are based on these articles and a free access to FT.com.

via PRNewswire

UK plans free access to scientific research by 2014

The government plans to give free access to publicly funded research via the Internet. This access will be granted to universities, companies and individuals no matter where they are located. Though academics are open to this new model, they are concerned that no money will be given to finance the transition. The cost is estimated at £50m per year which need to come out of the existing science budget, eventually leading to less research and hence less valuable papers.

via The Guardian

Coursera raises $6m and adds new universities

The new funding round brings the total raised to $22m. Among the new universities is the first non-US partners with the University of Edinburgh, University of Toronto and Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne. In an interview with GigaOm Andrew Ng gave some hints on how the startup is planning to monetize its platform. According to the article possible revenue could be earned by matching students with potential employers or charging students for certificates from partner universities.

via GigaOm

German Papagei.TV enters the language learning space

A new startup in the edutainment sector enters the market with a undisclosed “two-digit” million funding by Carsten Maschmeyer, one of Germany’s richest people. From the start Papagei.TV is offering desktop, tablet and mobile learning solutions based on movie and entertainment clips from Warner Bros., Reuters and the BBC. The platform is also the official language learning tool of Germany’s Olympic team.
Similar to startups like English Attack! or English Central, learners watch movie clips or other videos and then interact with the content by taking quizzes, checking pronunciation etc.

via GigaOm

President Obama proposes $1b for elite STEM teacher corps

The program plans to reward high performing teachers in math and science with salary stipends and is part of a long term plan to encourage education in high-demand areas.
Teachers who take part in the Master Teacher Corps will earn an extra $20k per year but must also agree to participate for multiple years. The hope is that those master teachers will eventually share their skills with other teachers around them, raising the overall quality education in the schools.

via AP

Edmodo raises another $25m

The new round brings the total funding to $47.5m and the funding will be used to enhance Edmodo’s products and to support its users. In the past year Edmodo’s userbase more than doubled from 3 to 8 million users and the platform is now being used in 85 of the 100 top US school districts.

via GigaOm

WizIQ launches iPad App

WizIQ announced last week the launch of its iPad app for its virtual classroom. The app enables students to attend live classes and asynchronous content like presentations and videos from their iPad. An Android application will follow, soon.

via WizIQ

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review:ed #26 Interview with Daphne Koller & Andrew Ng of Coursera (Audio)

review:ed Audio Podcast

review:ed Episode #26

Interview with Daphne Koller & Andrew Ng of Coursera

  • recorded: April 27th 2012
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imagine K12 This Interview is sponsored by imagine K12
imagine K12, the silicon valley incubator for ed tech companies, will start its summer 2012 program in July. The online application is currently open and is due on May 4.
Visit imaginek12.com/apply for more information.

On Friday, Christopher Dawson and myself had the pleasure for a short talk with the two co-founders of Coursera, Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng.

As the startup is backed with $16 million dollars in venture funding and thus also got some coverage outside of the education vertical, we were of course very interested in hearing a bit more online education centered and beyond the usual articles on some of the big tech-blogs.