How iversity works
Berlin-based startup, iversity has launched, offering a handful of free university courses that you can take completely online to pack your brain full of relevant knowledge, or simply to keep your brainpower from fading. Without having to pay thousands of dollars, you can take a MOOC (massive open online course) which offers videos, assignments, and many times, interaction, mimicking a traditional course, an increasingly popular option for distance education. Several ivy league schools have offered online courses in this format, but the catch is that you don’t get any college credit for these courses, they are purely for educating yourself – not a bad move when you’re looking to gain a competitive edge in your market.
The open course platform offers a structured course environment featuring multimedia teaching materials, as well as assessment features such as multiple choice and peer review in order to keep students engaged and provide them with quantitative and qualitative feedback. Additionally, iversity offers a discussion board where students can engage in peer-to-peer learning by asking and answering questions or sharing links, references and general observations.
“We want to develop world-class courses that allow students to learn in an efficient and effective way,” the startup states. “However, our aim is not to replace the university or the academics that work there. Our aim is to empower them. We want to allow the best professors to teach thousands of students. On the other hand we want to enable students to take classes from the best professors around the globe. In so doing we want to improve the quality of teaching at existing institutions, without raising the cost of instruction. We believe that open courses can be an important factor in that equation.”
Courses you can already start taking
They are funded to the tune of one million Euros and state more courses will be added frequently. Currently, you can choose from these options, among others:
- The Future of Storytelling
- Contemporary Architecture
- Design Basics
- Intro to Political Philosophy
- Cyber Security and Human Rights
- Methods in Finance
- Web Engineering
- Social Entrepreneurship
Remember, it is a German startup, so you may have to use a browser that translates materials for you, as some will be in German. But if you don’t have the financial means or time to go back to college to brush up on things like finance, or get updated on security measures, this is one great way to sharpen your skills and give your brand a competitive advantage.