The U.N. has announced the launch of the world's first tuition-free, online university. As part of this year’s focus on education, the UN Global Alliance for Information and Communication Technology and Development (GAID) presented the newly formed University of the People (http://www.uopeople.org/), a non-profit institution offering higher education to the masses.
The university was founded by Shai Reshef, an Israeli entrepreneur. Mr. Reshef said that this University opened the gate for people to continue their studies from home and at minimal cost by using open-source technology, open course materials, e-learning methods and peer-to-peer teaching.
Currently two degrees are available, one in computer science and the other in business administration. Admissions opened just over two weeks ago and without any promotion some 200 students from 52 countries have already registered, with a high school diploma and a sufficient level of English as entry requirements.
Students will be placed in classes of 20, after which they can log on to a weekly lecture, discuss its themes with their peers and take a test all online. There are voluntary professors, post-graduate students and students in other classes who can also offer advice and consultation.
The only charge to students is a $15 to $50 admission fee, depending on their country of origin, a processing fee for every test ranging from $10 to $100 and tuition is free.
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