Digital platforms [part 1]

Many of the world’s most renowned educational institutes such as Princeton, Stanford, MIT and many others are joining forces and creating online environments which allow everybody with an internet connection to follow its courses. Often for free. Already today, millions of students are studying a wide variety of subjects – this number is expected to increase dramatically over the coming years.

Examples of such online platforms:
Coursera (courses from 33 top universities incl Princeton and Stanford)
Udacity (online courses aimed at better preparing students for real life, partners with renowned IT companies)
MIT-Harvard OpenCourseWare (free MIT course materials)

Khan Academy (free online education for primary and secondary school)
[A group of people is working on translating Khan Academy also to Dutch:]

Gaining knowledge via video courses enables another phenomenon: ‘flipping’ the classroom. Students are given the lecture as homework – so that they can go through the lessons at their own speed. In class, the course is being discussed and teachers can provide support when students are stuck. Many of these platforms also provide exercises online as well as an online system to monitor the student’s progress.

Other interesting digital developments include: – will merge together with into iPoPP [link]. is an online platform which allows teachers from all across the globe to create courses and projects together. It was created by a Dutch guy named Ralph Genang and is active in 196 countries and used by 120.000 teachers today.

There are many many more platforms than I have listed above. I will share more in the coming weeks – and please share your favorites in the comments below!

I see “digital” as an enabler for scale & the valuable human factor: by taking away the ‘robotic’ tasks (such as delivering the same lecture over and over; monitoring student progress etc), the teacher has more time and space for looking ‘into’ a student.

This post contains only a very small selection of digital platforms that will disrupt education. What am I missing? please share in the comments below!

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Claire Boonstra

Claire Boonstra, founder of Operation Education - feeding the movement to revolutionize education. I have lived many different roles in life - as a student, engineer, corporate employee, wintersports-blogger, strategic marketing manager, mobile future event organizer, augmented reality startup co-founder and now an education reformer and public speaker. But I am also a mother of three young children, a daughter, wife, sister, utopist dreamer, asker of difficult questions, visionary, improv dancer, skier, former glider pilot – and most of all a human being in search of how I can best balance my three main priorities in life: my family, my personal wellbeing and my mission to feed the movement to revolutionize education.

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