About the NMC Academy
The NMC Academy is a fresh approach to accelerate professional learning among educators, providing personalized and powerful mini-courses that inspire and transform teaching practices. The NMC Academy’s free, online mini-courses are hosted by a variety of education institutions and specifically designed for busy teachers and faculty serving students in grades 6 through 16 (secondary and undergraduate tertiary).
The New Media Consortium (NMC) was selected by HP to scale-up and assume leadership for what was formerly known as the HP Catalyst Academy, which provided professional learning for educators teaching STEM+ (science, technology, engineering, math, and related 21st century skills). Now as part of the NMC Academy, the NMC plans to expand the catalog of free online mini-courses for teachers around the world.
Launched in January 2013, the Academy was a collaboration between HP, the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), the NMC, and more than 30 universities and NGOs in 15 countries. Thanks to HP’s leadership and funding in the pilot and incubation phases, it has grown into a global collection of free courses that are building and showcasing the future of web-based learning and new approaches to professional recognition through digital badges.
The roots of the Academy showcase the value of collaboration between not-for-profit educational organizations and the private sector. The HP Catalyst Academy was a natural progression for the HP Catalyst Initiative, in which HP, ISTE, and the NMC worked with educators on campuses across the world, supporting and funding the development of technology-based projects that aimed to transform STEM teaching and learning over the past three years. These projects included the creation of virtual and remote laboratories to expand access to science equipment and the development of more affordable mobile technologies, among many others.
The HP Catalyst Initiative’s three core partners built a global network of innovators from 56 education organizations in 15 countries, a collaboration between universities, colleges, schools, and non-profit organizations. OECD summarized the results of the HP Catalyst Initiative in the case study “Sparking Innovation in STEM Education with Technology and Collaboration” (http://bit.ly/OECD-Catalyst).
The NMC is thrilled to assume leadership of the Academy and is tremendously thankful for HP’s partnership and support every step of the way. The forward-thinking legacy brought to the project by the founding partners will continuously inspire the NMC Academy to mature and evolve. The goal has always been to be experimental — to try new things that no one is doing yet in order to expand access to high-quality training for different types of audiences and to make student learning more engaging and relevant.
The current catalog of STEM+ mini-courses will be expanded in 2014 to incorporate a wide range of new disciplines and fields. As the first step in this expansion, a new mini course on using open educational resources will be launched in April, alongside the addition of a new collection of 22 HP LIFE e-Learning courses on entrepreneurship, in collaboration with HP. HP LIFE e-Learning is an online business and IT skills training program that shapes entrepreneurial thinking and action.