FutureLearn delivering free university courses to learners around the world

(18 September 2013) FutureLearn, the first UK-led provider of massive open online courses (MOOCs), is from today offering learners around the world access to free, high quality courses from its internationally renowned university partners.

FutureLearn is wholly owned by The Open University. The new website combines the best elements of the social web with The Open University’s 44 years of expertise in distance and open learning.

The FutureLearn website opens today as an open beta, which will run until early 2014. Learners will be able to sign up for a selection of courses from FutureLearn’s university partners, with learner feedback used to inform the ongoing development of the website. So far learners from over 165 countries have registered their interest in taking a course on FutureLearn.

Universities and Science Minister David Willetts said, “The launch of FutureLearn is an exciting development for UK learning. MOOCs provide the opportunity to widen access to our world class Universities and to meet the global demand for higher education.

“FutureLearn has the potential to revolutionise conventional models of formal education. I encourage all our institutions to explore the opportunities offered by new modes of technology, such as MOOCs. This will keep the UK ahead in the global race to deliver education in worldwide markets.”

FutureLearn was set up in December 2012 as the UK’s first provider of free, high quality MOOCs. Currently numbering 26, its partners and course providers comprise leading UK and international universities and cultural institutions including the British Library, British Museum and British Council.

1The current list of first courses being piloted by partner universities follows below. Courses will be added from the University of Bristol and FutureLearn’s international partners, Monash University and Trinity College Dublin, at a later date.

Read a lot more including a list of courses here.