By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – San Jose State College, among other educational institutions in the California system,is looking for creative ways to reduce college costs. Recently it announced a project with Udacity, a for-profit provider of MOOCs, massive open online courses, to jointly create three introductory math courses aimed at high school and community college students.

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The online courses are free; for credit they are each $150, much less than a credit-bearing course from the institution.

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Assuming the project will continue beyond the pilot, the University will keep 51% and Udacity 49%.

MOOCs are large and popular; however many students drop out. To help make sure students complete courses and retain credit, mentors will meet with students. While there are ways to personalize large media courses, there are many critics.
That’s why a grant from the National Science Foundation to gauge effectiveness is important.

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Read more in The Chronicle of Higher Education.