Educational software firm Instructure is set to launch a new network that will make it possible for colleges and universities of any size to get into the open online course game that has been limited to elite universities to this point. Canvas Network will debut in January, with schools ranging from Brown University, Providence, RI, to Scottsdale Community College, Scottsdale, AZ, already accepting students for the program.
Instructors, given free rein on how the course is set up, can use the same platform institutions provide for students of tuition-based courses. Registration is open to anyone with Internet access.
“Canvas Network enables us and other participating institutions to decide the way we want to structure our courses,” said Joel Hartman, vice provost and chief information officer at the University of Central Florida, in an article for eCampus News.
More than 20 free courses are being offered in topics ranging from art appreciation to Gender Through Comic Books, offered by Ball State University and facilitated by Spider-Man creator Stan Lee.
“Hundreds of institutions already use Canvas to teach tens of thousands of courses,” said Instructure CEO Josh Coates. “Today, we’re enabling the institutions to make these courses open to the public through the Canvas Network.”