Before I could access the course I’m starting today through Coursea I had to accept the honor code. Now for a course that is free and not for credit other than a certificate of completion (assuming you complete the requirements) there doesn’t seem as much need for confirming that the student is actually doing the work but it is a big question in the bigger online learning world. In courses where everything is done through discussion forums and emailed assignments, where avatars aren’t even used as it is as close to anonymous as you can get except for exchanging names, how does a teacher, school, institution know who is doing the work? In the corporate world it is a bit easier. Either the employee can exhibit the new skills or not but in the academic world, how do we know? There have certainly been a number of cheating scandals in recent times. With fierce competition for coveted spots at prestigious institutions, this will be an ongoing question.