MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) are free courses specifically designed to be studied online by a cohort of worldwide learners. They are an affordable and flexible way to learn new skills, advance your career and deliver quality educational experiences at scale.
MOOCs are offered on a variety of platforms by world-class universities and institutions. The University of Tokyo creates MOOCs on the two frontrunners among online course providers, Coursera and edX.
Many people are confused between MOOC and OCW (OpenCourseWare). OCW was started in 2001 by MIT as an open digital publication of high-quality college-and university-level educational materials. Contrary to MOOCs, OCWs offer only materials, but not an entire course. OCWs are under Creative Commons licenses, which allow the use, reuse and distribution of materials, whereas MOOCs are under copyright licenses. OCWs are fully free and provide no certificate upon completion. On other hand, MOOCs are also free to audit but cost for verified certificates and/or credits*.
*Credit transfer is inapplicable to The University of Tokyo.