Coursera’s Signature Track Is More of the Same

Yesterday Coursera announced that they will be introducing a “signature track” for students who want their certification verified. By signing up, Coursera will do its best to verify that you, are the real you, based on your photo, “Signature Phrase”, and typing patterns.

Of course there will also be a slight fee for this certification — $30-$100. The entire procedure is an admirable effort for Coursera to keep up with edX’s and Udacity’s proctored exams. I commend Coursera for using typing pattern recognition algorithms rather than traditional testing centers, but in general, I don’t agree with the decision to move in this direction for generating revenue.

Additionally, the “signature track” has a few flaws right off the bat:

Although Coursera doesn’t plan to stop offering free classes, this move looks like more of the same. Charging for fees for classes just moves Coursera closer to the business model of traditional schools. More troubling is that this is not the “disruptive” change I had hoped and expected from MOOCs.

Critics may call me a hypocrite for not offering a better solution, but I’d probably be working for Coursera myself if I had one. Hopefully I’ll come up with such genius ideas after my Innovations class; or perhaps this blog itself is my effort to “try to stop creative people“.

For now, the following classes have the “Signature Track” option:

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s