Last December, MIT announced the creation ofMITx, an ambitious project to recreate the MIT classroom experience online; in March, the MITxprototype course — “Circuits and Electronics,” or 6.002x in MIT’s course-numbering system — debuted. In May, MIT and Harvard University jointly announced the creation of edX, an organization that will further develop the MITx platform and enable other universities to use it as well.
As MIT and Harvard gear up to offer new edX courses in the fall, the edX team is taking stock of its experience with 6.002x and beginning to incorporate what it learned into the system’s design.
In the end, almost 155,000 people registered for 6.002x. Of those, roughly 23,000 tried the first problem set, 9,000 passed the midterm, and 7,157 passed the course as a whole.
While the rate of attrition may seem high, Anant Agarwal, the president of edX and a professor of computer science and engineering at MIT, points out, “if you look at the number in absolute terms, it’s as many students as might take the course in 40 years at MIT.”