Getting accepted into a prestigious university is a daunting task. Paying for it can be even more daunting. In an effort to help those all over the globe further their education, MIT and Harvard University created a non-profit organization called edX.
The online platform is actually a conglomerate of academic institutions from around the globe including the aforementioned universities plus other notables including Georgetown University, Kyoto University, Technical University Munich, and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, as well as a host of others. The open-source online courses began being offered for free back in the fall of 2012, and there are already more than 1 million students taking online courses.
edX has also adopted a computerized grading program that automatically grades classwork and tests, which will eventually be upgraded and capable of marking essays. Students taking online courses will receive a certificate of mastery (no college credits) if they have completed the course on a satisfactory level.
There are 64 online classes being offered through edX for the fall of 2013. They include some seriously heavy courses such as Introduction to Computer Science, Neuronal Dynamics, Introduction to Bioethics, Introduction to Solid State Chemistry, and Foundations of Computer Graphics. The courses offered cover a wide range of curriculum that includes art, science, and technology that can be accessed 24/7, which lets the students learn on their own time rather than having a set schedule. Classes are typically seven to 12 weeks long and students can interact with each other and professors on edXís discussion board.
An interesting feature of the courses offered allow you to instantly check to see if youíve answered questions correctly, and in some cases, change your answer if itís wrong. Those interested in taking fall classes can sign up on the edX website.