Thomas Friedman, author of the popular book “The World is Flat,” envisions an education system where students can “create [their] own college degree[s] by taking the best online courses from the best professors from around the world – some computing from Stanford, some entrepreneurship from Wharton, some ethics from Brandeis, some literature from Edinburgh – paying only the nominal fee for the certificates of completion.”

Friedman desires an education system that is customizable and accessible for students and educators around the world. He believes that electronic resources and tools can help overcome a variety of educational hurdles globally, including access to instruction and variety in coursework.

At HotChalk, we fully agree! Today’s students are technologically savvy and want to use online tools to learn. Educators need to adjust accordingly.

In an increasingly global world, we must find new ways to reach people whose physical location makes higher learning difficult or impossible. HotChalk not only makes it possible for universities to deliver education to a global community, but it does so with passion and commitment to quality and lifelong learning.

While in the United States we have made a lot of progress, we still have a long way to go to ensure everyone has access to Friedman’s vision. Technology in education had its birth in the pathbreaking 1983 report “A Nation at Risk,” which included a recommendation that high school graduation requirements include coverage of the “Five New Basics,” one of which was computer science. Then, in 2001, the No Child Left Behind Act included a recommendation that by the eighth grade all students should be technologically literate.

HotChalk entered the scene in 2004 with the goal of using technology to deliver the best possible academic experience to online and distance learners and educators. And today, we are the largest online education community in the world.

Imagine a teacher in the rural Delta being able to access exceptional, accredited and cost-sensitive master’s of education programs with professors who are available around the clock for their questions, to help them review a particular learning theory, to support their practice.

Online graduate education brings dozens of new opportunities within reach of adult learners and professionals. With more than 50 percent of school districts located in rural areas, the potential that HotChalk brings to teachers seeking advancement cannot be understated.

At HotChalk, we are education advocates who support policies that give students choice in their educational pursuits and support tools that decrease costs, improve the quality of education and facilitate learning without travel. Our senior leadership, executive team and board of directors all have deep educational policy expertise.

We, like Friedman, believe that easier access to learning tools can lead to a better educated, global population.

Learn More: Click to view related resources.