The Indian School of Business (ISB) is all set to make its entry into the club of premier institutes offering the massive open online courses (MOOCs) to global learners next year with a uniquely designed content for working adults - 'A Life of Happiness and Fulfilment', free of cost.
To this effect, it signed a partnership agreement with US-based online education provider, Coursera, early this week, to develop courses for the latter's 10-million-plus learners, spread across the globe.
Designed by ISB's visiting professor, Raj Raghunathan, the certificate course on happiness and fulfilment will be the first to be dished out in the series starting mid-2015.
Coursera, which is offering 800-plus courses through 115 university partners, is keen on capitalising on its first India-generated content and become popular here "for offering quality and relevant content on a par with global standards".
Speaking to Business Standard on phone, Vivek Goel, chief academic strategist at Coursera, revealed his plans for India. "Though at this point we are keen to see how our first course takes off, we are quite aware of the demand for courses in software programming and other IT related content," said Goel. Interestingly, a quarter of Coursera-sponsored course content covers information technology, programming and mobile cloud applications.
Goel's team this week is camping in India to learn the potential market demand for online courses, institutions it could forge partnerships with and chalk out a price formula among others.
Arun Pereira, executive director, Centre for Teaching, Learning and Case Studies at ISB, said there were at least 3 other courses in the boardroom it wanted to develop partnering with Coursera, and said, the tie-up was a perfect opportunity for them to leverage the expertise of its world-class faculty to design and deliver cutting-edge courses.
Pereira justified starting a non-academic course saying, the goal was to "design good quality and right content".