Palo Alto Weekly

News - September 7, 2012

Stanford appoints online-learning vice provost

Stanford University appointed computer scientist John Mitchell its first vice provost for online learning on Aug. 30. The appointment is part of a larger Stanford Online initiative that the university said would restructure learning and better position it as a worldwide learning institution.

President John Hennessy said the online initiative would reach Stanford students but also lifelong learners throughout the world. It offers courses taught by Stanford faculty, software designed by and for Stanford faculty, a new website with resources to those involved in online learning, and seed grants.

Stanford rarely establishes new vice-provost offices. The university created the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education nearly 20 years ago; and in 2007 the Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education opened. Both fundamentally reshaped education at Stanford, university officials said.

About 15 courses will be offered online in the fall quarter by Stanford faculty, covering engineering, mathematics, social science, education and entrepreneurship. Many more are lined up for winter and spring.

—Palo Alto Weekly staff

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