Khan Academy

Khan Academy
Motto A free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.[1]
Founded October 2006 (2006-10)
Founder Salman Khan
Type Non-profit organization
Services E-learning, Education
Official languages
English, 4 official website translations, ~20,000 closed-captioned videos[2][3]
Owner Salman Khan
(founder and Executive Director)
Affiliations SAT,[4][5] Pixar
15.795 million USD (2012)
Expenses 19.119 million USD (2014)
105 (November 6, 2016)

Khan Academy is a non-profit[6] educational organization created in 2006 by educator Salman Khan with a goal of creating an accessible place for people to be educated.[7] The organization produces short lectures in the form of YouTube videos.[8] Its website also includes supplementary practice exercises and tools for educators. All resources are available to users of the website. The website and its content are provided mainly in English, but are also available in other languages like Bengali, Hindi and Spanish.


"What's Inside of Blood", a Khan Academy video

The organization started in 2004 when Sal Khan tutored one of his cousins on the Internet using a service called Yahoo Doodle Images. After a while, Khan's other cousins began to use his tutoring service. Because of the demand, Khan decided to make his videos watchable on the Internet, so he published his content on YouTube.[9] Later, he used a drawing application called SmoothDraw, and now uses a Wacom tablet to draw using ArtRage. Tutorials are recorded on the computer using screen capture software called Camtasia Studio.[10]

The critical acclaim and the positive responses of students prompted Khan to quit his job in finance as a hedge fund analyst at Connective Capital Management in 2009, and focus on the tutorials (Then released under the moniker "Khan Academy") full-time.[11]

Khan was born in New Orleans to immigrant parents from Bangladesh and India.[12] After earning three degrees from MIT (a BS in mathematics, a BS in electrical engineering and computer science, and an MEng in electrical engineering and computer science), he pursued an MBA from Harvard Business School.[13]

The Khan Academy started out by creating videos that focused on teaching mathematics. Since then, the organization has hired more staff members and uploaded material in other subjects including history, business, science, the arts, and computer science.[14][15][16] As of 2015, learning materials were created for over 5,000 different topics.[9] It has content specialists which work with faculty members to write learning materials.[17]

The organization's content has been translated to other languages for accessibility. The first official version was Spanish, in September 2013.[18] There are also translations to the content contributed by volunteers.[2] As of November 2016, Khan Academy has seven official websites in other languages,[19] and 20,000 closed-captioned translations on videos.[3]

In addition, Khan Lab School, a school owned by Khan Academy, was opened on September 15, 2014 in Mountain View, California.[20]


Khan Academy is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, mostly funded by donations coming from philanthropic organizations.[21]

In 2010, Google donated $2 million for creating new courses and translating content into other languages, as part of their Project 10100.[22] program. In 2013, Carlos Slim from the Carlos Slim Foundation in Mexico made a donation for creating Spanish versions of videos.[23] In 2015, AT&T contributed $2.25 million to Khan Academy for mobile versions of the content accessible through apps.[24]

According to Khan Academy's filings with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, Salman Khan has received over $350,000 in annual compensation from Khan Academy since 2011. In 2015 it was raised to $556,000. In 2013, President and COO Shantanu Sinha also received over $350,000 in compensation.[25] In total, 29 employees of Khan Academy make more than $100,000 per year.


Khan Academy provides:[26][27]


Khan Academy's website ( is a wrapper for videos which are hosted on YouTube. The website is meant to be used as a supplement to its videos, because it includes other features such as progress tracking, practice exercises,[31] and teaching tools.[32] The material can also be accessed through mobile applications.[33]

The videos show a recording of drawings on an electronic blackboard, which are similar to the style of a teacher gives a lecture. The narrator describes each drawing and how they relate to the material being taught.[34][35] Nonprofit groups have distributed offline versions of the videos to rural areas in Asia, Latin America, and Africa.[36][37][38]


The website generates problems based on skill level and performance to go along with the content.[30][39] Khan believes his academy presents an opportunity to overhaul the traditional classroom by using software to create tests, grade assignments, highlight the challenges of certain students, and encourage those doing well to help struggling classmates.[11] The tutorials are touted as helpful because, among other factors, they can be paused by students while classroom lectures can not.[40]

In 2010, it introduced badges as part of a program to promote gamification of learning.[41][42] There are currently 6 main levels of badges, with hundreds of different badges in total.[43]


Khan Academy has been criticized because Salman Khan does not have a background in pedagogy.[44][45] Statements made in some videos have also been questioned.[46] In response to these criticisms, the organization has fixed errors in its videos, expanded its faculty and built a network of content specialists.[46] Others have presented data showing Khan videos are less effective than those of other publishers and that the concept of chalk on a blackboard is less engaging for students than other styles of video, such as cartoons.[47]

In an interview from January 2016, Khan defended the value of Khan Academy online lectures while acknowledging their limitations: "I think they're valuable, but I'd never say they somehow constitute a complete education."[20]


Khan Academy has gained recognition both nationally and internationally:


  1. "About". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
  2. 1 2 "Khan Academy International". Khan Academy International. Khan Academy. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
  3. 1 2 "Is Khan Academy available in other languages?". Khan Academy Help Center. Khan Academy. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
  4. 1 2 Tanz, Jason. "Can Khan Academy's Free SAT Prep Level the Playing Field?". WIRED. Retrieved 7 November 2016.
  5. 1 2 "Official SAT® Practice". Khan Academy. Khan Academy. Retrieved 7 November 2016.
  6. "Nonprofit Explorer - ProPublica". ProPublica. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  7. "One Man, One Computer, 10 Million Students: How Khan Academy Is Reinventing Education". Forbes. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  8. Sampson, Demetrios G.; Ifenthaler, Dirk; Spector, J. Michael; Isaias, Pedro (2014-07-17). Digital Systems for Open Access to Formal and Informal Learning. Springer. ISBN 9783319022642.
  9. 1 2 Dreifus, Claudia (2014-01-27). "Salman Khan Turned Family Tutoring Into Khan Academy". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  10. Khan Academy: The future of education?. 60 Minutes. CBS News. March 11, 2012.
  11. 1 2 Temple, James (2009-12-14). "Salman Khan, math master of the Internet". SF gate. Retrieved 2009-12-23.
  12. Adams, Richard. "Sal Khan: the man who tutored his cousin – and started a revolution". the Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  13. "Khan Academy: The man who wants to teach the world". Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  14. "Khan Academy's video library". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2014-11-15.
  15. "About the team". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2014-09-14.
  16. "The Wikipedia of Education: 'Khan Academy' Launches Computer Science Education". Career mitra. 2012-08-20. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
  17. "Our content specialists". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
  18. "Khan Academy" (in Spanish).
  19. "Is Khan Academy available in other languages?". Khan Academy Help Center. Khan Academy. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
  20. 1 2 "'A Bit Of A Montessori 2.0': Khan Academy Opens A Lab School". Retrieved 2016-01-06.
  21. "The Funders Pouring Money Into the Khan Academy - Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence - Inside Philanthropy". Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  22. "$10 million for Project 10^100 winners". The Official Google Blog. 2010-09-24. Retrieved 2010-09-24.
  23. 1 2 "Mexico's Carlos Slim funds Khan academy in Spanish". Marketplace.
  24. "AT&T Awards $2.25 Million for Mobile Learning Platform". Philanthropy News Digest (PND). Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  25. "Nonprofit Explorer - KHAN ACADEMY INC - ProPublica'". ProPublica. Retrieved 2015-09-22.
  26. 1 2 "Khan Academy Fact pack" (PDF) (PDF). Khan Academy. June 1, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-15.
  27. "Khan Academy Unveils New Math Resources for Common Core -- THE Journal". Retrieved 2015-11-08.
  28. Reimagining Education with Sal Khan. Askwith Forums. Harvard Education. May 8, 2013.
  29. "Khan Academy FAQ". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2014-12-17.
  30. 1 2 "Khan academy: Exercises read me". GitHub.
  31. "Khan Academy". PCMAG. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  32. "How Are Teachers and Students Using Khan Academy?". MindShift. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  33. "Khan Academy for ipad review". theappzine.
  34. Kaplan, David A. (2010-08-24). "Innovation in Education: Bill Gates' favorite teacher". CNN Money. Retrieved 2011-01-05.
  35. "Need a tutor? YouTube videos await". USA Today. AP. 2008-12-12. Retrieved 2011-01-05.
  36. "A free world-class education for anyone anywhere". About (FAQ). Khan academy.
  37. "Laureate: Salman Khan". Education Award. The Tech Awards. 2009. Retrieved 2014-06-11.
  38. "Salman Khan". CNBC. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  39. "Khan Academy Unveils New Math Resources for Common Core -- THE Journal". Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  40. Rasicot, Julie (2011-08-04). "Education Review: Web site offering free math lessons catches on 'like wildfire'". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
  41. Ben Kamens (2010-12-22). "Khan Academy Now Has Badges". Retrieved 2015-01-11.
  42. "Gamification in Marketing: Lessons from the Khan Academy Website". Search Engine Watch. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  43. "Badges". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2015-01-11.
  44. Christopher Danielson; Michael Paul Goldenberg (2012-07-27). "How well does Khan Academy teach?". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-11-15.
  45. Strauss, Valerie (2012-07-27). "Does the Khan Academy know how to teach?". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-07.
  46. 1 2 Strauss, Valerie (2013-10-22). "Khan Academy using contractors to check Web site's videos". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-11-15.
  47. Schaffhauser, Dian (23 September 2015). "OpenEd Assesses 'Most Effective' Online Learning Resources". THE Journal. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
  48. Thompson, Clive (15 July 2011). "How Khan Academy Is Changing the Rules of Education". Wired. Retrieved 26 November 2012.
  49. "Project 10100 Winners". Project 10100. Google. 2010. Retrieved 2011-01-05.
  50. "The O'Sullivan Foundation Grants $5M To Online Learning Platform Khan Academy". Tech crunch. November 4, 2011.
  51. Special, Time.
  52. "The Heinz Awards: Salman Khan". The Heinz Awards.
  53. "Khan Academy To Be Subject of Ed. Department Evaluation". Education Week. July 14, 2014.
  54. Kao,Yvonne – Schneider, Steve. "Khan Academy Resources for Maximizing Mathematics Achievement: A Postsecondary Mathematics Efficacy Study". Institute of Education Sciences. Retrieved 2014-11-17.
  55. "Pixar in a Box".
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Khan Academy.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 12/1/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.