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Could the Khan Academy Become a Traditional School?

A summer camp could be the first step toward the Khan Academy becoming a physical school.


Could everyone’s favorite virtual learning space, the Khan Academy, turn into a physical brick and mortar school? The answer is yes, at least for the summer. Founder Salman Khan is planning a Khan Academy summer camp for kids to be held in 2012 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

According to KQED/Mindshift, the camp will be modeled after the We Teach Science camp Khan co-organized two years ago in Silicon Valley. Far from the "flipped classroom" model Khan's popularized, that camp took a hands-on, project-based learning approach to learning science, technology, engineering, and math, and Khan wants his upcoming camp to do the same. "The videos are great for learning things at an academic level," says Khan. "You can learn intuition for what a derivative is and about Newtonian mechanics through the online exercises, but this is another level of learning."

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Will PayPal Billionaire Peter Thiel's Team of College Dropouts Change Learning?

Meet Thiel's inaugural class of super-elite "20 Under 20" fellowship recipients.

In April, Peter Thiel, one of the co-founders of PayPal and the first major investor in Facebook, announced "20 Under 20," his experiment that will pay students from some of the nation's most elite colleges $100,000 each to drop out and start companies. Thiel's views on college degrees are pretty controversial—he believes they're unnecessary for talented, entrepreneurially-minded students. After sifting through 400 applications, Thiel announced his inaugural class of fellowship recipients and their projects on Wednesday.

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Democratizing Education: MIT's Open Course Revolution Turns 10

Ten years in, it's easy to take for granted just how significant the free sharing of educational material really is.


Ten years ago this month the Massachusetts Institute of Technology made the radical decision to post almost all the educational materials used in its classes on the web, and they made them free to anyone with an internet connection. Since then, MIT OpenCourseWare has shared more than 2,000 courses with an estimated 100 million people around the globe. More importantly, they've made a profound impact on the democratization of education.

It's easy to forget that MIT's move is what really sparked the whole global Open Educational Resources Movement. In the decade since, we've become used to elite universities sharing their courses through dedicated sites, iTunes podcasts, and YouTube videos. There's also the role the OCW movement has surely played in inspiring visionaries. Would Sal Khan, the founder of the online Khan Academy, the virtual school that's on a mission to provide an excellent education to anyone, anywhere, for free, have come up with the idea if MIT hadn't trailblazed years earlier? KQED's MindShift blog also has a great list of other ways OCW's positively impacted education—everything from "reinforcing the college experience" to "empowering educators."

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