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Minnesota eases restrictions on online education following internet dust-up

Hey, all you colleges and universities not in Minnesota: Want to offer a free, online, not-for-credit course to people living here, no questions asked? This is your lucky day, TwinCities.com reports. The state has stopped enforcing a 20-year-old statute requiring such institutions to go through a lengthy registration process before they could offer no-cost internet coursework. The move on Friday, Oct. 19, was prompted by an online article involving Coursera, a Silicon Valley startup that works with dozens of colleges and universities to offer some of their courses online for free. The bulk of those schools aren’t registered with Minnesota’s Office of Higher Education as current law requires, and months ago the state office informed Coursera. So Coursera amended its terms of service to reflect this, though it disagreed with Minnesota’s position and considered the requirement onerous and “unfortunate.”

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