YouTube is a very popular online video community that allows people to discover, watch and share videos. YouTube allows people to easily upload and share video clips on its site and across the Internet through Web sites, blogs and e-mail. I know many teachers and educators have subscribed YouTube. They have uploaded their instructional videos which make it easier for students to access these materials on YouTube. However, the announcement of launching YouTube Channel by the University of California, Berkeley on October 3 this year is unprecedented. UC Berkeley is the first university to have a channel on YouTube and makes entire course lectures and special events available, free of charge, on YouTube. What a bold move by UC Berkeley, providing a strong leadership on promoting open education movement. Visitors at UC Berkeley at YouTube can view over 300 hours of events and videotaped courses on a variety of subjects, including chemistry, physics, biology, bioengineering, peace and conflict studies, classic literature, as well as search engines with a lecture by Google co-founder Sergey Brin.
UC Berkeley has been a leader in the open education movement in higher education. In fall 2001, UC Berkeley launched webcast.berkeley.edu, a site that delivers Webcasts of UC Berkeley current and archived courses as well as live and on-demand on-campus events. In April 2006, UC Berkeley launched its audio podcast program, making audio content available as free downloads through webcast.berkeley.edu. It also offers video content through iTunes U on topics such as art, history, computer science and mechanical engineering.
Well, YouTube is no longer just a video-sharing site to watch and share videos. YouTube can be an important teaching tool for schools and educational institutions. I am excited about the future of open education movement. Hopefully, more educational institutions will follow the lead by UC Berkeley, MIT, Yale, and many others to distribute their course lectures in a digital form to the world.