29 December 2011

Khan Academy to 4 Million Unique Monthly Visits

Forbes Video Network

Khan Academy is growing rapidly, thanks to economic backing from contributors such as Google and Bill Gates. Over 2600 videos are now offered, with more created every week.
Over the last month, Khan Academy saw 4 million unique users. That’s up from 1 million in the same period last year, and up from 3.5 million in October (asked by dbigthe)
The Khan Academy team is currently made up of 22 people, and they’re hiring ~1 more per month. (asked by dbigthe)
“I’d say that 90% [of the videos are shot] in 1 take. 99% are 2 takes.” (asked by johnsmcjohn)
“I will definitely do much more advanced mathematics in the next year than what we have now.” (This resulted in Michael Nielson, leading quantum computing expert and author of the standard text on the subject, to offer his assistance right in the thread) _TC
h/t Carpe Diem

Khan Academy is growing very rapidly -- adding topics, content, and better ways for teachers to use the content in the classroom. As more people get involved in the creative department, expect to see higher production values creeping into the routine.

As to whether KA will ever grow into an accredited provider of educational credentials, that depends a lot on where Salman Khan wants to go with the idea. At this point, he seems happy with the idea of creating a "log" of online activities as a type of student transcript. As the real world's attitudes toward education evolve, such informal proofs of mastery may be sufficient for many apprenticeships or jobs.

What seems more likely, is that an enterprising education entrepreneur will combine the best of Khan (mastery learning), Knewton (adaptive learning), and other e-learning methods into a low-cost, for-profit online institute for learning, from kindergarten to post-university and adult lifelong learning. The idea would include test prep, and a wide range of basic certifications, along with homeschool credentials at least through high school level.

College level accreditation for traditional degrees would likely require affiliation with established educational institutions. That would require deep pockets, given the mercenary nature of most university administrations. In today's economy, it might be best for such a startup to grab a profitable niche and expand from there, following a well-crafted long-term plan.

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