Coursera Inc. will offer free online courses in more than 30 locations around the world, mostly in third-world countries, bringing instruction to students who lack computer access.Under an agreement with the State Department, courses will be available at some U.S. embassies, the Mountain View, California-based company said today. All but one of the sites are outside the U.S., including Baghdad; Port au Prince, Haiti; and Hanoi, Vietnam.
Students can take the courses, have reliable Internet access and learn from local course facilitators, Coursera said. Along with the State Department, the University of Trinidad and Tobago and Overcoming Faith Academy, an orphanage in Kenya, are among the groups hosting the space. Of the more than 5 million students who have signed up for the free courses, about 1.2 million are from emerging markets, said Yin Lu, who leads the company’s growth and international outreach efforts.