‘edX’ online learning platform allowing professionals in MA to go back to school

BOSTON (WHDH) - ‘edX’ is an online learning platform that is allowing professionals in Massachusetts and around the world to go back to school in a new way.

Millions have taken the platform’s courses on the site.

A select few people are now taking the opportunity to do the same in the Boston area.

The platform uses online text books and allows students to take courses on their own time.

Danaka Porter, a current student in the Boston area, had initially said the entire thing sounded like it was made up.

Porter is now among the pioneering group of online learners in the Boston area who will get her Masters, or ‘MicroMasters’ as the company calls it, after earning many of her initial credits online through edX.

edX CEO, Anant Agarwal, said he and the company felt that technology could transform education. The first edX course was taught in 2012.

He said that adding the MicroMasters program allows for students to take a series of courses tied to one field of study. “So, traditionally you have to apply for admissions, come to campus, spend one to two years on campus, maybe $50,000. That’s a Masters degree. It makes it inaccessible to many because of time and cost and other flexibility constraints.”

Porter’s MicroMasters courses cost her a little more than $1,300 and account for about half of a full Masters degree.

In January, Porter will be one of 40 MicroMasters students who head to MIT to finish their degree in Supply Chain Management.

Porter, who currently does logistics for a shipping company in Canada, said that even if she was not getting a full Masters degree, the MicroMasters program gave her new and applicable skills.

“Knowledge is power and the more you have of it the better it is,” she said.

Right now, edX offers nearly 40 MicroMasters programs and plans to add more.

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