by Michael A. Wilner
"...in what seems to be the first major effort by a university to tailor a massive open online course, or MOOC, specifically to high school students,Brown University is preparing to offer a free online engineering class with the aim of teaching high school students about the merits and challenges of the field.
"f the program is truly unprecedented, as Brown’s team has come to believe, it could start a trend of directly advising high school students and their teachers on specific curriculums, motivated in part by the hypercompetitive college admissions process.
“The real goal here is to get students interested in engineering to better understand engineering, so that they can make good decisions about what they do in the next step,” said Wendy Drexler, director of online development at Brown. “If they decide that they’re interested in engineering and they want to apply to different engineering schools, we want them to have all the information they need.”
"The course is based more on activities and research assignments than on video lectures, in an effort to challenge students to actually build something, Dr. Drexler said. Students will also receive guidance on what types of courses they should look for when applying to colleges.