Back in early Summer 2013, we had the pleasure of briefly joining the wonderful team at FutureLearn – a new start-up from the Open University. The FutureLearners were working towards the release of the UK’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) platform at the time and we had piles of fun tinkering with some of their UX Design challenges.
When the first release went live to the public on September 18 2013, the BBC were all over it, and The Guardian reported “The launch of the UK’s biggest online university venture has the potential to ‘revolutionise conventional models of formal education’ and keep the UK ahead in the global race to deliver the best education”.
With ambition this grand, FutureLearn’s commitment to finding and building a team with the right culture has been extra important. Led by Head of Product Matt Walton, the FutureLearn team were a collection of ex-BBC, ex-Berg types with some additional help provided by top London product developers at Unboxed and Go Free Range. See? Good folks. Good results.
Literally 12 months to the date of the first *official* release, FutureLearn was named start-up of the year at the British Interactive Media Association Awards. The BIMA recognised FutureLearn’s rapid growth and innovative approach.
For Jesamy, we will always remember our brief time at FutureLearn and think of it as 10 people in a basement in Camden, with no windows and a single stand-up for the entire company. FutureLearn are now at over 60 people and still growing. I wonder what’s in store for this awesome group of people on the 18th of September 2015?
Here’s a Vine of our time (heh) at FutureLearn – or as we like to call it – FutureLanD, by Jess.