Microsoft has announced a new professional degree program that would allow professionals to pursue university-level courses at any stage in their careers. The main aim of this program is to allow people to learn new skills and to equip them for high-tech jobs. Titled as “Microsoft Professional Degree” (MPD), this program is being offered via edX.org which is an online learning platform founded by Harvard University and MIT.
The degree program being introduced by Microsoft is offering employer-endorsed, university-caliber courses that aim to provide professionals with the necessary education to fill gaps in today’s emerging, high-tech fields.
Speaking of the course, Steven Guggenheimer, a top Microsoft executive said:
“The Microsoft Professional Degree will be offered via edX, as well as through learning-as-a-service offerings delivered through partners, to meet customers’ evolving training needs and to help close the skills gap we are seeing across a number of industries.”
A defining characteristic of this program is that it targets fresh entrants in the market and the people at their mid-career level desiring to strengthen their skill set and continue advancing in the competitive tech industry. Via the MDP, participants will get access to invaluable real-world data, Microsoft’s tools and the open source community which includes Excel, Power BI and Cortana Analytics to R and Python.
The first course being offered through this program is on Data Science. This field is still relatively new and has a vast amount of employment opportunities. The course has been designed to equip interested individuals for these jobs. Since May 2016, over 200 pioneering partners and 650 Microsoft employees have been participating in a closed preview to evaluate and validate this new data science curriculum. The course will be available on edX soon. You can sign up for it here.