The University of Michigan is among the university partners joining Noodle, the country’s fastest growing online higher education network, as it announces the launch of a platform to help universities meet the rising student demand for online lifelong learning.

U-M will be joined by Case Western Reserve University and Columbia Business School as launch partners with the new platform scheduled to launch in January 2022.

In partnership with global learning technology leader D2L, AstrumU, and other best-in-class providers, Noodle’s platform will give U-M and other universities more control over their content and a more significant percentage of tuition, while offering students a better supported experience, a better curated content library, and a more social learning environment. 

“Just like we revolutionized how great universities bring degree programs online, we are revolutionizing how great universities compete in the lifelong learning space,” Noodle CEO John Katzman said. “We know the demand for courses, certificates and other non-degree offerings is massive and growing, and we know learners trust university brands to deliver them. Noodle’s platform puts university brands front and center and provides learners with a better experience from start to completion.”

U-M and its leadership at the Center for Academic Innovation, which produces open online learning experiences in collaboration with faculty, said Noodle helps further the university’s mission of providing access and connecting learners worldwide.

“Against the backdrop of soaring demand for online and lifelong learning, the University of Michigan is serving the people of Michigan and the world by inspiring change in higher education and reinforcing an engaged and informed society,” said James DeVaney, associate vice provost for academic innovation and founding executive director of the Center for Academic Innovation.

“The world needs leaders who are problem-solvers and problem solvers need social learning communities and perpetual learning opportunities “We are excited to join Noodle to launch their new platform and build upon our shared commitment to increasing access to high-quality, social, lifelong, and global learning opportunities, and positioning higher education institutions for long-term sustainability and impact.”

Unlike other platforms that take 50-65 percent of revenues from universities, Noodle’s platform asks for only 15-35 percent and makes it simple for schools to share content — their own and that of other elite universities — with their communities through university-branded, Noodle-powered microsites.

“The chances that everything you’ve learned by age 21 will take you through retirement are increasingly slim,” said Nikhil Sinha, an industry expert on first-generation online course platforms who is an advisor to Noodle. “There is no one better qualified to help people continue to grow than great universities, and no one better qualified to support them than Noodle.”

Noodle’s platform also improves the overall user experience for students by leveraging Noodle’s AI-powered recommendations as well as expert human resources, including teaching assistants and counselors.

Further, students have the ability to invite others to aid them both in finding their course and consuming the course content via collaboration tools like chat/video messenger and group news reels.

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