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The American Council on Education on Wednesday announced the first 111 courses chosen to participate in the Alternative Credit Project, an initiative to raise awareness about free or low-cost online courses that some colleges accept for credit. The courses are all offered by nontraditional providers such as Ed4Online, StraighterLine and JumpCourse, which don't award credit themselves, but have had many of their courses approved for credit recommendation by ACE.

A group about three dozen institutions, including Central Michigan University, Front Range Community College and the University of Maryland University College, have so far said they will accept many of the courses for credit. The project is supported by a $1.89 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.