SOURCE: University of California, Irvine Extension

University of California, Irvine Extension

February 07, 2013 00:02 ET

UC Irvine Open Online Courses Approved for ACE Credit on Coursera

UC Irvine Provides Two of First Five ACE-Approved Courses on Coursera; Approval Provides a Path for Students to Earn College Credit From Open Online Courses

IRVINE, CA--(Marketwire - Feb 7, 2013) - The University of California, Irvine announced today that two of its free online courses on Coursera -- Algebra and Pre-Calculus -- are now approved for credit by the American Council on Education (ACE). The ACE designation provides a path for students who successfully complete the courses and online proctored exams to receive transferable credits from more than 2,000 colleges and universities.

"UC Irvine is committed to open and free high-quality education and is pleased to contribute two of the courses offered through the announced partnership between ACE and Coursera," said Gary W. Matkin, Ph.D., dean of Continuing Education, Distance Learning and Summer Session. "Our courses in fundamental mathematics are designed to provide a foundation for success in all undergraduate majors, and will provide a gateway to higher education for thousands of students. This designation is a milestone and proves yet again that UC Irvine is a pioneer in open education."

UC Irvine has been a leader in the open education movement for more than a decade. Since its initial participation in OpenCourseWare, the institution has provided 90 individual courses, 300 video lectures, and 1,500 course content online for free. The seven UC Irvine open courses currently on the Coursera platform have received more than 250,000 enrollments in one week.

The ACE approved courses were created by UC Irvine mathematics lecturers Sarah Eichhorn, Ph.D., assistant vice chair of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Mathematics, and Rachel Cohen Lehman. "The two classes we're offering through Coursera are the foundation for success in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. My colleague and I are thrilled that students around the world have the opportunity to view math as a doable, beautiful, powerful tool," said Eichhorn. "As educators at UC Irvine, it is exciting to be part of this online education milestone."

The math courses, which began the last week of January, already have more than 80,000 students from around the world enrolled, from ages eight through 90-plus years old.

"By offering students opportunities to receive credit for their hard work and successful completion of these courses, we are advancing our mission to offer low-cost, high-quality higher education to more people than ever before," said Daphne Koller, co-founder of Coursera. "Through our partnership with institutions like UC Irvine we aim to give students options that will enable them to achieve their academic and career goals."

In addition to the ACE approved Algebra and Pre-Calculus courses, the following UC Irvine courses are available on Coursera: Principles of Public Health, Fundamentals of Personal Financial Planning, Microeconomics for Managers, Introduction to Biology: DNA to Organisms, and Science from Superheroes to Global Warming. For more information, visit Coursera.org.

Free courses, video lectures and more information about UC Irvine's OpenCourseWare initiative may be found at http://ocw.uci.edu/.

ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE: Founded in 1965, UC Irvine is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since 2005, UC Irvine is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California system, with nearly 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty and 9,000 staff. Orange County's largest employer, UC Irvine contributes an annual economic impact of $4.2 billion. For more UC Irvine news, visit www.today.uci.edu.

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