Ethical standards for all
My grandpa mentioned to me that he used Khan Academy, an online self-teaching tool, over the summer to learn about some new and updated topics that are taught in today’s schools. I forgot about his comment until I saw a commercial announcing the collaboration of Bank of America and Khan Academy on the subjects of financials and banking. After I looked farther into Khan Academy, I learned that it is a non-profit organization that strives to provide education to everyone, a noble goal.
The article One Man, One Computer, 10 Million Students: How Khan Academy Is Reinventing Education explains some of the programs that Khan Academy offers, all for free. They include videos for students that explain a variety of subjects ranging from math and science to arts and humanities, tracking mechanisms that allow teachers to see the improvement of their students, and more recently, interactive programs that are not based online.
The article also highlights some future opportunities for Khan Academy and online education; “The biggest opportunities of all may be in the developing world.” Internet access exists in most developing countries and tablets come in cheap versions. Khan Academy video could also store videos on thumb drives so that people in developing countries may access them. Translators at Khan Academy currently translate the videos into several languages so that kids all over the world can watch them.
“’Sal Khan is arguably the most impactful educator in the world, and he has done it in 24 months,’ says GSV’s Moe. ‘That’s really cool and exciting and motivating. He is leading the revolution. My only disappointment is I think he could have done just as well as a for-profit–although it’s hard to argue he made the wrong strategic decision.’” This insight shows the moral integrity that Khan and Khan Academy possess by running the company as a non-profit. I plan on analyzing Khan Academy from the Utilitarian Ethics point of view, showing the ways that the company’s decisions could potentially impact students in addition to other forms of education. I also want to look into their partnership with Bank of America and how this could impact their values and non-profit standing.
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