> 2U’S

BOLD VISION FOR THE FUTURE

FOUNDED IN 2008 IN MARYLAND WASHINGTON DC, 2U, INC. SET OUT TO CREATE THE WORLD’S BEST ONLINE EDUCATION AND THEY’VE BEEN DEFYING THE ODDS EVER SINCE. ALSO AROUND THE EXACT SAME TIME AND COINCIDING WITH THE BEGINNING OF THE MOOC REVOLUTION, GETSMARTER WAS ALSO FOUNDED.

Early on in the industry, high-quality online education wasn’t highly regarded and people doubted its quality and longevity. But at every step of the journey, 2U has been growing and evolving, and as the market evolved, the demand for lifelong learning increased.

In 2017, 2U acquired GetSmarter and the combined 550+ programs have become industry-leading examples of online education done right, at scale, helping transform the lives of over 350,000 people. All while delivering great outcomes.

In 2021, 2U, Inc. acquired edX, a world-leading online learning platform and education marketplace. The acquisition brought together the unique strengths and complementary capabilities of two major forces in online education to create one of the world’s most comprehensive free-to-degree online learning platforms.

Together, 2U and edX now serve more than 230 partners, including 19 of the top 20 ranked universities globally, and offer more than 3,500 online learning opportunities to over 40 million learners, including free courses, executive education, boot camps, and undergraduate and graduate degrees.

2U’s programme offerings have helped to expand access to career relevant, executive and professional education for South Africans from great universities, like UCT. With edX, they will now expand this access – from free courses all the way to postgraduate degrees. The University of Cape Town will also join the edX platform and offer higher education solutions across this spectrum.

Expanding their South African footprint
2U has expanded their footprint in South Africa, having just built a new office in Cape Town. With that comes the continued creation of new jobs and hope to double the South African workforce through the establishment of centres of excellence in key areas of the business.

2U is committed to democratising education. In addition to their existing paid portfolio of executive education programmes, boot camps and degrees, they now offer more than 3,000 free courses on the edX platform and are pledging $1M in grants to their nonprofit university partners to develop additional free courses that will help us all gain essential human skills for the virtual age. Many of 2U’s university partners have embraced their vision for expanding access by joining the edX Consortium and committing, for the first time, to offer free, high-quality learning experiences on edX.org. Numerous corporate and university partners will also begin offering new disruptively priced programs in career-relevant fields This gives students a greater range of study options.

2020 and 2021 have been historic years for digital education, which saw millions of people around the globe embracing online learning out of necessity. 2U has been on a journey to eliminate the back row in higher education for 13 years. They design and develop high-quality courses with university partners that focus on desirable outcomes for students to help them accelerate their careers and thrive in an ever changing world of work. Increased access means more affordable options for students and corporations.

Their courses are designed with student outcomes in mind, ensuring that key learning objectives are achieved. Many of their courses, such as the University of Cape Town’s Project Management course, have the local context in mind and have real world application. Other courses, like MIT Digital Transformation, have more global application. While most programs are offered in English, a portion of courses on edX are offered in languages such as Spanish, French, or Mandarin.

As connectivity improves, so too does the online learning market in South Africa.

2U

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