Nathan Ingraham, writing in The Verge, tells us that Forty public universities will offer free online courses with full credit starting this spring as part of an initiative called MOOC2Degree. As anybody working in education will know, MOOCs have gained huge publicity and traction of the past year or two, but have always lacked formal accreditation - a huge disadvantage compared to traditional degree courses.
|Image source: Online Learning Insights.|
These MOOC2Degree programmes will be "free online courses with full credit". If this works as a process, and I predict it will, free on-line education will finally pose a serious challenge to third-level Colleges, and perhaps 1st and 2nd levels in the near future.
Getting a degree on-line for free, from some of the top universities in the world will soon be possible. The cost of a laptop and a good Internet connection will always be way cheaper than tuition fees or going to College. The MOOC2Degree folks claim to be working with 40 public university partners in the USA. It's still in the early stages of development, but already looks very good to me. We educators will all be affected by this as courses will have to be restructured and developed for on-line delivery. There of course will be follow-on effects for College administrators and IT Depts - in short, the Learning Technology revolution that we have all been waiting for might actually be about to arrive?
Check out the following video from the www.mooc2degree.com and see for yourself what it is all about: