This is a course for those who are interested in the challenge posed by massive and persistent world poverty, and are hopeful that economists might have something useful to say about this challenge. The questions we will take up include: Is extreme poverty a thing of the past? What is economic life like when living under a dollar per day? Are the poor always hungry? How do we make schools work for poor citizens? How do we deal with the disease burden? Is microfinance invaluable or overrated? Without property rights, is life destined to be "nasty, brutish and short"? Should we leave economic development to the market? Should we leave economic development to non-governmental organizations (NGOs)? Does foreign aid help or hinder? Where is the best place to intervene? And many others.
At the end of this course, you should have a good sense of the key questions asked by scholars interested in poverty today, and hopefully a few answers as well.
How does this course use videos? Do I need to watch the lectures live?
Various videos will be released each week including lecture sequences on the topic for that week, special interview videos with leading economists, and supplementary videos for reviewing topics in economics and statistics. You can watch these at your leisure once they come available each week, though we encourage you to keep up with the pace of the course.
Will the text of the lectures be available?
Yes, transcripts of the videotaped lectures will be available alongside each video.
Is there a required textbook?
Required readings will be assigned each week. More details will be available on the syllabus.
How are grades assigned?
Grading will be based on lecture sequence questions (25%), homework assignments (45%), a brief final project (10%), and a final exam (20%). See syllabus for more details.
Will certificates be awarded?
Yes. Two forms of certificates are available for this course. Online learners who achieve a passing grade can earn an Honor Code Certificate of Mastery or pay a small fee and earn a Verified Certificate of Mastery. These certificates will indicate you have successfully completely the course but will not include a specific grade. The certificates will be issued by edX under the name of MITx.
Will the material be made available to anyone registered for this course?
Yes, all the material will be made available to all students.
What type of computing environment do I need for this course?
You need to have a computer running one of the following operating systems:
EdX est une plateforme d'apprentissage en ligne (dite FLOT ou MOOC). Elle héberge et met gratuitement à disposition des cours en ligne de niveau universitaire à travers le monde entier. Elle mène également des recherches sur l'apprentissage en ligne et la façon dont les utilisateurs utilisent celle-ci. Elle est à but non lucratif et la plateforme utilise un logiciel open source.
EdX a été fondée par le Massachusetts Institute of Technology et par l'université Harvard en mai 2012. En 2014, environ 50 écoles, associations et organisations internationales offrent ou projettent d'offrir des cours sur EdX. En juillet 2014, elle avait plus de 2,5 millions d'utilisateurs suivant plus de 200 cours en ligne.
Les deux universités américaines qui financent la plateforme ont investi 60 millions USD dans son développement. La plateforme France Université Numérique utilise la technologie openedX, supportée par Google.