The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux and collaborative development, today announced it is building a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) program with edX, the nonprofit online learning platform launched in 2012 by Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). More than 31 universities have partnered with edX and nearly two million people have accessed its courses online since it launched just 18 months ago.
Additionally, The Linux Foundation is announcing a new Authorized Training Partner program with AT Computing, Enea, OlinData and SolutionWare among the first members. Together the new MOOC program and Advanced Training Partner program will increase the ways in which Linux professionals can access high-quality, technically advanced, community-based training materials.
As Linux has become the fabric of computing, demand for talent to support it has skyrocketed. For example, according to the 2014 Linux Jobs Report, nine in 10 hiring managers are hiring Linux pro’s in the next six months. And, while talent isn’t bounded by geography, sometimes access to advanced Linux training has been limited. Employers are seeking Linux professionals in a market where not enough exist, while professionals struggle to find affordable, accessible training opportunities to advance their careers.
The Linux Foundation and edX are partnering to develop a MOOC program that will help address this issue by making basic Linux training materials available to all for free. Previously a $2,400 course, Introduction to Linux will be the first class available as a MOOC and will be free to anyone, anywhere. The Linux Foundation is among a new group of member organizations edX announced today who will contribute courses to the platform.
EdX’s MOOC’s are an increasingly popular way to provide for unlimited participation and open access to learning material to people anywhere in the world via the web. These programs also provide interactive users forums where students and professors can build communities, similar to the way in which the Linux community collaborates. MOOCs have recently generated enrollments for individual classes of 60,000 or more students.
“Our mission is to advance Linux and that includes ensuring we have a talent pool of Linux professionals,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation. “To widen that talent pool and give more people access to the opportunities in the Linux community and IT industry, we are making our training program more accessible to users worldwide. We are partnering with the leader in MOOCs to enable this access.”
“Linux is the world’s largest collaborative development project, and people everywhere want to understand how it works and how to tap into that massive community to advance their careers and general understanding of how technology today is built,” said Anant Agarwal, edX president. “Like edX, Linux is a non-profit, open source initiative, and we are pleased to partner with The Linux Foundation to make their basic learning materials accessible to more people around the globe.”
The new Linux Foundation Authorized Training Partner Program will also increase access to Linux Foundation training courses by making them available from a variety of training providers around the world, using Linux Foundation Authorized Instructors. While these courses will require enrollment fees, the increased access points for the material should allow more people to take advantage of the high quality training material produced by The Linux Foundation, with delivery by local, high-quality instructors.
The Linux Foundation will continue to offer free Linux training resources, scholarships and other resources to ensure it is a rich resource of free Linux technical training for everyone. For more information about The Linux Foundation’s Linux training services, please visit http://training.linuxfoundation.org.