Online Learning | News

MIT Division of Student Life Launches Online Ed Initiative

MIT's Division of Student Life (DSL) is planning to develop an online experiential learning curriculum to teach skills such as project management, team dynamics, civic engagement, diversity, collaboration and leadership.

The DSL currently provides a variety of student services related to academic and personal support, and offers activities intended to teach fundamental skills and principles. The goal of this new initiative is to enable more students to learn some of those skills and principles through an online platform.

MIT plans to host the program through MITx, which is MIT's portion of the edX online learning platform. Sally Susnowitz, who is currently the director of MIT's Public Service Center, will take on a new role as the director of the DSL-MITx Student Development Initiative. According to MIT, Susnowitz will begin working with DSL colleagues and other collaborators to "establish an iterative cycle of experiments, refinements and expansions that will result in well-developed, well-tested educational modules by fall 2019."

According to Chris Colombo, dean for student life, Susnowitz will also "ensure that the student experience is engaging and rigorous, in keeping with MIT's pedagogical standards," he wrote in an email to DSL staff.

The DSL-MITx Student Development Initiative was launched by two MIT alumni, Michele and Burt Kaliski, who are also supporters of MIT's Public Service Center. This Kaliski's said they hope their gift will encourage other MIT alumni to support the initiative.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at

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