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ASU, Coursera to offer online courses for Latin American, US Hispanic students

ASU is 1st to offer Coursera specialization credential for language skills

Arizona State University and Coursera partnering on classes for Hispanic audiences.
September 30, 2015

Arizona State University and Coursera announced Tuesday that they will offer open online professional-development courses targeted towards Hispanic audiences in Latin America and the U.S. that will help students succeed in the global economy.

Through this partnership with Coursera, ASU becomes the first university in the United States to offer online courses tailored to the needs of Latin America and the Hispanic community. The announcement underscores why U.S News and World Report named ASU the most innovative school in the nation. 

“ASU continues to develop new ways to provide students a path to learning that fits their life balance,” said Mark Searle, interim provost at ASU. “Yesterday’s announcement also reflects our efforts to prepare students for an increasingly interconnected global economy.”

The courses offered by ASU through Coursera will be specializations designed for Spanish-speaking working professionals. Specializations differ from traditional online courses because they provide a series of classes the student can take to master the subject area. Participants who take the specialization finish with a capstone project and then earn a credential, highlighting their mastery of the subject. 

The specializations offered by ASU via Coursera address a need for accessible professional-development tools designed for Hispanic students. Three of the five specializations will be offered in Spanish, a first for an American university.

ASU maintains an extensive array of digital class offerings to ensure more students across the globe have access to a quality education. Already, ASU is recognized as one of the leaders in online learning, offering degrees and professional development through programs such as ASU Online, the Global Freshman Academy and the Starbucks College Achievement Plan.  The new partnership with Coursera allows ASU to specifically target Latin America.

The specializations offered by Coursera were developed through ASU’s Global Launch, which provides professional skills development to students and working professionals so they can thrive in the international economy.

“ASU, through Coursera en Español, will be able to expand its impact in the Spanish-speaking community through these new specializations,” said Julia Rosen, director of Global Launch at ASU. “This is a great opportunity to provide new learning resources to the Hispanic community in the United States and around the world.”

ASU will offer five specializations:

• Beginning Chinese for Spanish Speakers: Students will learn basic conversation skills and words and phrases useful for business.

• English for Business Administration: This specialization teaches Spanish speakers English for a corporate environment. Students learn how to communicate in writing and to verbally address scenarios that could arise in business.

• Creativity, Design and Innovation: This specialization, offered jointly with the National Autonomous University of Mexico (known by its Spanish acronym UNAM) teaches students to generate out-of-the-box solutions to complex challenges. The course covers creative problem-solving, design thinking and making, and innovation strategy.

• TESOL Certificate: Teach English Now: This is aimed at English instructors in Spanish-speaking countries. Upon completion of the course, students obtain a TESOL certificate from Arizona State University.

• Success in the Content Classroom — The Teachers Toolbox Series: This provides instruction to teachers in U.S. school districts who work with Spanish-speaking students. Teachers will learn how to plan lessons and assignments to benefit students who are learning to speak English.

Support for the online specializations provided by ASU came from the Televisa Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to the advancement of educational opportunities for Latinos. Televisa provided video production support for the specializations.

Students can take the courses offered by ASU on demand through the Coursera platform on their computers or mobile device. Enrollment for the specializations opens today online at The courses begin Oct. 7, except for the English for Business Administration course, which will start at the end of October.

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