UC Irvine’s OpenCourseWare program was recently named winner of the Award for Institutions during the 2011 OPAL Awards. The award recognized UCI’s participation in making courses and materials taught by UCI professors free and accessible to anyone across the world.
UCI was the first university on the West Coast to join the OpenCourseWare Consortium (OCWC), which provides free online classes to those who don’t have access to a university campus.
The OCWC also emphasizes the importance of international education, a primary reason why the coursework submitted by the university is available all over the world. To date, UCI has published more than 66 complete courses, 120 video lectures and 1,000 learning assets on the OpenCourseWare website, which has had about 100 million visits from every region in the world.
The award, presented in Berlin at this year’s Online Education Conference, recognized the university’s efforts through the OCWC that have resulted in the “improvement of quality and innovation in educational organizations.” In addition to the recognition, the award provides exposure to UCI for its ongoing advancements in higher education.
“Colleges and universities worldwide increasingly recognize the benefits of adding resources for students, teachers, self learners, businesses, governments and other organizations anywhere in the world,” said D. Gary W. Matkin, dean of Continuing Education, Distance Learning and Summer Session at UC Irvine. “The international recognition of UC Irvine’s OpenCourseWare program honors UCI’s contribution to open education and hopefully will inspire others to offer university-quality educational resources that can be accessible anywhere in the world and at anytime.”
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