Education New Zealand Manapou ke ti Ao has announced a new phase of its online education pilot that it is running with FutureLearn.
First revealed in 2021, ENZ’s project offered 22 short taster courses online in collaboration with 13 New Zealand education providers. The courses attracted more than 80,000 enrolments from over 200 countries.
The second phase of the online education initiative will focus on converting the online audience into a viable commercial proposition for New Zealand-based education providers.
“This first phase pilot shows there is an appetite for online courses from New Zealand, as well as our ability to attract learners in full-time employment – a segment with a big potential for growth,” ENZ’s general manager of Partnerships and Marketing, Paul Irwin, said.
“It also demonstrated the willingness of many in the New Zealand education sector to build their online presence.
“The next steps are to continue evolving our offering on FutureLearn and understand better the pros and cons of partnering with existing online learning brands versus the potential benefits of a New Zealand-only branded platform that uses existing, proven technology.”
Since phase one was completed, the course portfolio has grown to more than 30 courses with approximately 50% directly related to a sustainability or an environmental theme. ENZ hopes to increase the overall total number of courses further, to at least 40 course during phase two.
It will also be open to a wider range of subjects and bolster the topics that have proved successful, including English language, sustainability, and Te Ao / Mātauranga Māori.
The phase two pilot will run from June until September 2022.
In this week’s PIE Chat, the new CEO of FutureLearn Andy Hancock spoke of the opportunity to “leverage new technologies, leverage data to create engaging learner experiences and a more connected experience”.