WARNING! Starting on July 30th, 2015, we have started to rebuild from scratch the whole website of the Free Technology Academy, to make it much easier to maintain and use than it was before. We haven't finished yet! Apart from looks and layout, which may change several times before settling down, it IS very likely that there are broken links here and there, or URLs that will stop work in a few days. Please be patient and if you spot any problem, let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org)
FTA Frequently Answered Questions
Is it free to participate in the FTA? What are the tuition fees?
All FTA course materials, software and other digital resources are free as in freedom and as in beer, i.e. they provide the Four Freedoms and are published openly online, so you can download them and use them for any purpose. Nevertheless, professional staff involved in the Academy needs to get paid and as a consequence, we have to charge for the courses. That means that if you want to follow a course or several ones, you'll need to pay a tuition fee to the FTA.
Tuition fees are given per module. Current fees can be found in the course programme section.
Does the FTA provide an internationally recognised Master's Degree?
Our course modules do not constitute a full Master's Degree yet, although it is our aim to offer a full degree soon. However, all FTA courses are recognised by the partner universities: at this moment the Open University of Catalonia (UOC), Open Universiteit Nederlands (OU) and University of Agder (UIA). This means that ECTS credits obtained at FTA courses count towards a degree at one of the partner universities.
In order to realise the plans to offer a complete Master Degree, the Taskforce International Master Programme in Free Software has been set up.
What are the entrance requirements to participate in the FTA?
There are no specific requirements for participation in the FTA programme, but if you are interested in obtaining a degree at one of the university partners, their particular entrance requirements apply. Recommendations as to the background knowledge for each course are described in the relevant subsection of the course. See the course section.
Are there scholarships available?
Currently the only form of scholarships directly made available by the FTA is in the form of discounts. As you can see in the course programme section early registrations can be entitled to certain discounts. We will evaluate these discounts in the course of the programme and see whether other forms of scholarship can be made available. Also we encourage you to inform us of existing scholarship arrangements that might be applicable for the FTA courses. If you know of anything that might be useful to others, let us know so we can share it!
Is it possible to only do an exam instead of following the courses?
The short answer is: no.
The longer answer: the evaluation of FTA students is done continuously during the whole course. There are a number of assignments for which students receive marks. Depending on the course these activities may consist on answering questions, writing a short essay or completing and documenting a practical task. Also, the overall participation in the class, via forums and other communication tools, is evaluated by tutors along with these assignments.
Am I allowed to (re)use the materials of the FTA for other purposes?
Yes, you are actually encouraged to do so! All materials and software used at the FTA are published under free licenses. These licenses provide all users the right to 1) use them for any purpose, 2) study and adapt them to their needs, 3) to copy and share them and 4) to distribute modified versions. If you do so, it would be nice if you would let us know. We are happy to know and discuss further development in a bigger group of interested parties. The materials are available to read, improve and remix in the SELF Platform.
How can I help the FTA grow big and succesful?
Help is very much appreciated. A starting point is to spread the word and communicate about the Academy. You can find various materials in the Press Room. f you have any specific suggestions for improvement of the campus, of certain course materials or otherwise, use the contact form at the website.
I would like to enroll in FTA, but there isn't any FTA partner university in my location. What should I do?
As the FTA is a distance education programme, physical presence is not needed. Everything is designed to make sure you can participate from any place with an internet connection. So you are welcome to enroll in the programme! That said, if you know of a local university that might be an interesting partner of the FTA, please suggest it to us and we can explore the options.
I would like to learn about other topics related with Free Technologies, but not included in FTA Courses. What should I do?
FTA is a Free and Open project, so we will be glad to hear your suggestion and ideas for new modules and courses. As a collective body, we are always seeking for new collaborators and partner organisations to enlarge the FTA Network. Please contact us and give us your feedback.