News and analysis
April 20, 2014

Doris Buffett Offers Second Giving Course

For the second consecutive year, Doris Buffett, the sister of Warren Buffett, is offering a free online course to help donors learn how to give wisely.

Ms. Buffett’s Learning by Giving Foundation is collaborating with Northeastern University to present “Giving with Purpose: How to Get The Most Out of Your Charitable Giving” on EdX’s massive open online course platform, a nonprofit effort created by Harvard University and MIT.

Last year’s inaugural class drew 10,000 registered students from 111 countries.

Students will be able to nominate—and pick—charities that will receive grants totaling at least $100,000. The course’s organizers set the minimum to “leave the door open for additional donors beyond the Learning by Giving Foundation and Northeastern University,” writes Rebecca Riccio, director of Northeastern’s Social Impact Lab, in an email to The Chronicle.

Results from last year’s class led to a total of $130,000 being awarded to 40 charities from the Learning by Giving Foundation. Of last year’s beneficiaries, the foundation says, 25 percent were nonprofits that serve youth, 20 percent were food banks and related causes, 15 percent were health organizations, and 15 percent were other social-service or community groups.

Classes run until late May. To get there: Go to