Digital Bill of Rights Open to Student Crowdsourcing

Academics and business leaders came up with rights and principles around online learning for students to continuously revise.

by News Staff / January 24, 2013 0

A group of academics, non-profit and business leaders developed a bill of rights and principles around online learning that students are encouraged to continuously revise.

The original writers posted their version on January 22 and opened it up as a public crowdsourcing opportunity for students and others.

The crowdsourced version of the Bill of Rights and Principles for Learning in the Digital Age is on git.hub, a social sharing space for code developers. On Twitter, anyone can use the hashtag #learnersrights to share how they would change the bill and what they think about it.

Rights for Students

The bill of rights includes nine inalienable rights for students.

1. The right to access

2. The right to privacy

3. The right to create public knowledge

4. The right to own one's personal data and intellectual property

5. The right to financial transparency

6. The right to pedagogical transparency

7. The right to quality and care

8. The right to have great teachers

9. The right to be teachers

Principles of online learning

It also includes 10 principles that online learning should reach for.

1. Global contribution

2. Value

3. Flexibility

4. Hybrid learning

5. Persistence

6. Innovation

7. Formative assessment

8. Experimentation

9. Civility

10. Play

The bill's creators

The document stems out of a meeting called by Sebastian Thrun, a co-founder of online course provider Udacity, in December 2012. In Palo Alto, Calif., 12 people collaborated on the bill, including the following:

  • John Seely Brown, University of Southern California and Deloitte Center for the Edge
  • Betsy Corcoran, co-founder and CEO, EdSurge (
  • Cathy N. Davidson, distinguished professor of English and Interdisciplinary Studies, co-director Ph.D Lab in Digital Knowledge, Duke University, and co-founder Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Advanced Collaboratory (
  • Petra Dierkes-Thrun, lecturer in Comparative Literature, Stanford University; blogs about literature and digital pedagogy at
  • Todd Edebohls, CEO of careers and education service Inside Jobs (
  • Mark J. Gierl, professor of Educational Psychology, Canada research chair in Educational Measurement, and director of the Centre for Research in Applied Measurement and Evaluation at the University of Alberta, Canada
  • Sean Michael Morris, educational outreach for Hybrid Pedagogy ( and part-time faculty in the English and Digital Humanities Program at Marylhurst University in Portland, Ore.
  • (Jan) Philipp Schmidt, Peer 2 Peer University (P2PU, and MIT Media Lab director’s fellow
  • Bonnie Stewart, Ph.D candidate and sessional lecturer, Faculty of Education, University of Prince Edward Island, Canada
  • Jesse Stommel, director of Hybrid Pedagogy ( and director of English and Digital Humanities at Marylhurst University in Portland, Ore.
  • Sebastian Thrun, CEO of Udacity (, Google fellow and research professor in Computer Science, Stanford University
  • Audrey Watters, writer, Hack Education (