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The Future of Education

            "I think that MOOCs may allow peace in the world." A charming, remarkable twelve year old girl from Pakistan named Khadijah Niazi uttered these optimistic words during the 6th Davos Philanthropic Roundtable, an annual forum where well-known philanthropists, politicians, and business leaders gather to discuss the latest techniques on how to solve problems and to motivate upcoming philanthropist ("Victor Pinchuk Foundation - Davos Philanthropic Roundtable"). Niazi was invited to the 2013 forum alongside Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Stanford Computer Science professor Sebastian Thrun, among other distinguished panelists in attendance, to debate the topic of the year: online education changing the world ("Davos: 12-Year-Old Pakistani Prodigy Girl Talks About Her Online Learning - WiredAcademic"). She was asked to join the panel upon completing an online artificial intelligence (AI) course at the age of ten years old and then, a year after completing the AI course, the gifted child completed yet another online course on college-level Physics. Niazi is only one of thousands and thousands of students who have completed these rigorous, computer-simulated courses. MOOCs, or massive open online courses, are courses offered via the Internet that are accessible to students of any age, race, or gender virtually anywhere in the world. As of recent, MOOCs have gained vast popularity and a number of websites have begun to host these courses taught by university professors from prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Yale, Cornell, and Berkley. As more of Earth's population gains access to the online world, MOOCs and other forms of online education are revolutionizing the way students obtain an education. .
             The MOOC uprising may have started merely a few years ago, but the original system of distance education dates back to the 18th century. In 1728, a person by the name of Caleb Phillips promoted the earliest known distant learning course through the Boston Gazette (Pappas).

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