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NUS partners with global online course provider edX to expand its suite of courses

14 November 2019 | Education
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  • Staff and students now have access to more than 2,000 online courses offered by edX member universities and industry-leading companies; 
  • NUS to launch global certified online learning courses with edX from January 2020

Staff and students at the National University of Singapore (NUS) can now access more than 2,000 online courses across a diverse range of subjects offered by over 120 institutional partners around the world, including top universities such as Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of California, Berkeley. This is part of a strategic partnership with edX, the trusted platform for learning founded by Harvard and MIT. 

Based in the US, edX provides high quality, university-level courses in a wide range of disciplines to over 24 million learners worldwide, from the majority of top-ranked universities and industry-leading companies around the world. 

NUS staff and students may enrol in edX’s massive open online courses (MOOCs) via the University’s Learning Management System, LumiNUS. While NUS staff can acquire new knowledge and skills through these MOOCs, NUS undergraduates have the option of counting MOOCs which they have completed, as part of their Unrestrictive Elective (UE) requirements. Under NUS’s Design-Your-Own-Module (DYOM) initiative, introduced this August, undergraduates now have the flexibility to earn up to four modular credits within the UE space by pursuing DYOM modules.

The online courses offered by edX can also be curated by NUS instructors and integrated into the University’s on-campus teaching as supplementary course materials.

NUS to offer professional certificate programmes on edX next year

Through this partnership with edX, NUS will also offer high quality online courses to learners around the world. The first NUS programme, to be launched in January 2020 on the edX platform, is a professional certificate programme, “Spatial Computing Thinking”, taught by Associate Professor Patrick Janssen from the Department of Architecture at the NUS School of Design and Environment. Comprising four courses, this professional certificate programme will cover the theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed to create computational procedures for generating, analysing and visualising complex 3D spatial data sets. 

The courses, spread out over four months, will start with the fundamentals and gradually increase in complexity. Designed for those who are looking to upgrade their skills for professional development, the programme will be available to global learners, as well as NUS students and staff. Subscribers to the programme will be required to complete all four courses and their assessments to earn the certification.

NUS plans to introduce a spread of certified and non-certified courses over three years. Some of the MOOCs slated for 2020 include:

  • “Intercultural Communication at Work – Land the Job & Do it Well”, by the NUS Centre for English Language Communication. The course aims to equip learners with the professional communication skills to strive in culturally diverse workplaces. 
  • “Introduction to Data Science and the Internet of Things for the Built Environment”, by the Department of Building at the NUS School of Design and Environment. This is a data analytics skills development course for professionals in the built environment sector, such as architects, engineers, and construction and facility managers.
  • “The Future of US-China Relations”, by the NUS Asia Research Institute. The course will help students acquire an understanding of how great powers manage shifts in power and discern the differences in American and Chinese strategic thinking and priorities. 

NUS Senior Deputy President and Provost, Professor Ho Teck Hua said, “We are thrilled that the partnership with edX will provide NUS students and staff with greater access to knowledge across diverse topics and specialisations, including technology, business, and the humanities. The professional certificate programme that we are offering will also help global learners to develop the proficiency and expertise that employers are increasingly looking for in prospective employees.”

“We are excited to welcome the National University of Singapore, Singapore’s flagship university, to the global community of edX partners,” said Anant Agarwal, edX Founder and CEO. “The innovative work we’ve already done together through NUS’s Design-Your-Own-Module initiative demonstrates our shared commitment to reimagining how education is delivered on campus and online, to both students and faculty. I look forward to our continued collaboration to transform education on a global scale.”
 

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