Harvard will launch its “Harvard Online” program — designed for interdisciplinary, interactive course clusters — this coming January, beginning with a four-week long course called “Data Science Ready.”
The course, which will be delivered on the existing HBS Online platform, will be taught by Deputy Vice Provost for Advances in Learning Dustin Tingley. “Data Science Ready” will focus on providing nontechnical professionals the skills required to interpret and implement data in their fields of work.
“What’s a data science course for someone who is not a data scientist, and instead is someone who works with, or alongside data scientists? That informed two principles: one was equipping people to be critical thinkers when it comes to data,” Tingley said. “The second is facilitating communication.”
Harvard currently offers a multitude of online offerings, ranging from open courseware delivered via the EdX platform to specialized certificate programs from the Medical School’s HMX platform. Additionally, the Extension School offers degree programs with both online and in-person course components.
Vice Provost for Advances in Learning Bharat N. Anand ’88 said that the Harvard Online platform would specifically focus on offering sequences of courses designed to provide interdisciplinary perspectives on a topic.
“Take any topic of interest today, whether it’s healthcare, whether it’s climate change, whether it’s data and digital; these are big topics, right?” Anand said. “These are complex topics and almost no case, will you get a full understanding by just taking one course or from one discipline, whether it’s economics or medicine or business or policy