FutureLearn, the leading social learning platform, has worked with its global partners, which include over 170 world class organisations and 25% of the world’s top universities, to launch a number of courses and resources that will support academics, students, healthcare workers, as well as members of the general public, affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Understanding and preventing the spread of Coronavirus
The free ‘COVID-19: Tackling the Novel Coronavirus’ course, co-produced by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and FutureLearn in only five weeks, was the first resource to be launched and has commenced teaching today with over 70,000 learners from over 200 countries across the world.
To make the course as widely accessible as possible, all audio and video steps will include subtitles and/or downloadable transcripts as well as subtitles in six languages (English, Chinese, Portuguese (BR), Spanish (ES), French and Italian), and learners will have the option to access low-bandwidth alternative formats and downloadable material. As with all FutureLearn courses, learners will be able to work through the course at a pace that suits them. They will also receive a free digital certificate upon successful completion.
Simon Nelson, CEO of FutureLearn said: “During these incredibly challenging times, it is more important than ever that we all find ways to stay well-informed and well-connected. We have seen unprecedented interest in our free COVID-19 course, taught and moderated by leading experts at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. We’ve made this completely free and open to everyone because of the importance of this topic and the need to reach and share vital information with as many people as possible.
“Learners are creating a strong sense of community among themselves, with almost 5,000 comments in the welcome discussions from people of all walks of life looking to share their experiences and support one another. The ‘COVID-19: Tackling the Novel Coronavirus’ course will remain open for enrolment until the 24th May and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine will be updating the course with relevant information as more developments unfold.
These are extraordinary times and we are committed to supporting our partners, learners and industry professionals in any way we can. This course is another example of the variety of other resources launched by our fantastic network of global partners, in rapid response to the crisis, and FutureLearn hopes to make good on its purpose of transforming access to education by providing the world with reliable, accessible and engaging learning experiences.”
How FutureLearn and our partners are supporting the education and healthcare sectors
A number of our partners, including the University of Leeds, the British Council, the National STEM Learning Centre, the University of Michigan, Royal Observatory Greenwich, Cambridge Assessment English and St George’s, University of London, have launched a variety of courses and resources for students, parents, healthcare workers and other individuals affected by the pandemic. FutureLearn has also launched its own resources in order to help professionals and learners across these sectors adapt to present circumstances.
- FutureLearn Campus
FutureLearn has recently launched FutureLearn Campus to help its university partners to mobilise towards a digital future. The move allows FutureLearn’s partners to offer millions of their current staff and students access to the online short courses they deliver through the FutureLearn platform. The University of Michigan and the University of Leeds have been among the first partners to unlock FutureLearn Campus to their students and staff.
- ‘How To Teach Online: Providing Continuity for Students’
FutureLearn has launched its very first own-branded course developed and taught by our in-house online teaching and learning experts, and designed to give educators practical steps towards online teaching and student support. The course is currently open for enrolment and begins on 23 March.
- ‘Managing COVID-19 in General Practice’
Taught by experts at St George’s, University of London, this course is designed for front-line clinicians, healthcare workers and professionals tackling the large volume of patients in the current COVID-19 pandemic within the UK primary care sector. The course is currently open for enrolment and begins on 6 April.
- ‘Teaching English Online in China and Beyond’
Delivered by Cambridge Assessment English, this course will equip learners with the knowledge, digital tools, and ideas to start teaching English online in China and transform your teaching career. The course is currently open for enrolment and begins on 6 April.
- ‘Teaching Primary Science’ Courses
The National STEM Learning Centre and the Royal Observatory Greenwich have re-opened their ‘Teaching Primary Science: Getting Started’ and ‘Our Solar System and Beyond: Teaching Primary Science’ courses respectively. Both are designed to help teachers as well as parents now looking to provide home-schooling to deliver primary science in an engaging and practical way for 5-11 year olds.
The ‘Our Solar System and Beyond: Teaching Primary Science’ course begins on 23 March and the ‘Teaching Primary Science: Getting Started’ course begins on 20 April.
- The British Council’s ‘Teaching for Success’ Courses
The British Council are global experts in teaching English and have re-opened their series of English language ‘Teaching for Success’ continuing professional development courses for educators worldwide. All courses are currently open for enrolment and begin on 23 March.
- FutureLearn Pre-sessional and Teaching Online Course Collections
As COVID-19 continues to spread, the coronavirus travel bans are affecting thousands of students studying abroad. FutureLearn has partnered with top universities to launch a collection of English Distance Learning Courses that allow students to stay on top of their academic learning and prepare for university.
FutureLearn has also launched a collection of courses around how to teach online to support teachers are now being asked to create online content available on the How to Teach Online Courses page.