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Ned Lautenbach: Florida has become a national leader in online education
News from Gainesville Sun:
Published: Friday, July 18, 2014 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 at 8:13 p.m.
As an incoming senior at the University of Florida, 20-year-old Luke Bosso had a decision to make when his summer internship at a law firm in his hometown, Pensacola, evolved into a full-time job opportunity as a legal assistant. Should he return to Gainesville to finish his degree? Or should he stay in Pensacola and gain relevant job experience while finishing his degree online?
A year ago, the latter option wouldn’t have existed for Bosso, who studies criminology and law and plans to attend law school. But now thousands of students are benefitting from UF Online — one of the first undergraduate degree programs in the nation — and other offerings across the State University System that allow students to log remotely into their classes, virtually interact with their professors and peers, and experience university through an exciting new dimension.
Florida is a nationwide leader in online education, with several new game-changing initiatives and a far higher percentage of students enrolled in online courses than the national average. In many cases, these courses supplement the lessons learned in the classroom, help keep students on track for timely graduation, and are a cost savings to students and taxpayers.
The e…………… continues on Gainesville Sun
Online Education Platform Skilljar Embraces Bitcoin
News from CoinDesk:
Skilljar, a tech company that specialises in enabling third parties to deliver online training courses, has started accepting bitcoin payments.
Skilljar says its platform is used by hundreds of online instructors, who offer classes in a wide range of different fields, from yoga to programming. The instructors can now be paid in bitcoin using Skilljar’s e-commerce platform, alongside credit cards, debit cards and PayPal, with the cryptocurrency being immediately converted to fiat at the time of the transaction.
The company joins a group of other educational platforms that have embraced digital currency as a means to facilitate payments. As Skilljar CEO and co-founder Sandi Lin explained to CoinDesk, one of the chief benefits of the integration is that international students have the opportunity to pay for their education at a reduced cost. She cited the financial barriers within the global payments network, saying:
“We experience the pain of currency conversions on a daily basis in multiple ways, and [bitcoin] was an option that could help reduce that friction for a large number of our instructors.”
She added that bitcoin’s digital nature and international appeal makes it an effec…………… continues on CoinDesk