The University of California will unveil its first top-tier cyber courses in January - 26 online offerings, from global climate change to game theory. At the same time, it's eyeing China and even American soldiers as potential sources of cash to pay for them.
Academically, the UC system is venturing into territory that supporters hope will be the next wave of innovation: intellectually rigorous e-classes so animated and interactive that students can't help but excel.
"Some of our courses will be absolutely stunning," said Vice Provost Daniel Greenstein, who is leading the effort. "But we're not going to just knock people's socks off. We want to identify what works."
UC's new cyber studies will serve as a research project in which the professors who created them will gather data on their effectiveness, Greenstein said. Those findings will influence the project's fate.