Blended Learning, Continuing Education, Cost of Education, Domestic, Education Quality, Flipped Classrooms, For-Profit, Not-for-Profit, Open Source Education, Opinion, Required, Startups, Students, University & College - Written by on Friday, November 18, 2011 9:41 - 0 Comments

Opinion: Kevin Carey On Why DC Must Recognize The Revolution

by identity chris is via Flickr under CreativeCommons

Kevin Carey over at Education Sector, a think tank in Washington D.C., makes some very thoughtful points in his column in The New Republic. He suggests many politicians are unaware of the revolution taking place in education. He brings up some great quotes from management thinker Peter Drucker on the topic:

AS EARLY AS the Internet mania of the late ’90s, higher education has been singled out as ripe for a technology-driven revolution. And looking back at the grandiose predictions of the time, it’s fair to say that such claims deserve a dose of skepticism. In 1997, for instance, legendary management guru Peter Drucker predicted that “Thirty years from now the big university campuses will be relics. Universities won’t survive. It’s as large a change as when we first got the printed book.” Fourteen years later, the big universities are bigger and (after a stellar year for endowment investments) richer than almost ever before.

Carey discusses future predictions happening in learning. He suggests hardest hit in the future will be regional 4-year universities that are not selective. He also predicts some for-profit colleges could be left behind if they do not create innovative, high quality programs. He calls on progressives to stop sneering at online learning… but, rather, to realize the potential it has to help the underprivileged members in society:

But the growth of online higher education is something that progressives should embrace and work to make happen sooner rather than later. The students attending existing for-profits and less selective traditional institutions are disproportionately first-generation college students from lower-income, minority, and immigrant backgrounds. Graduation rates at many of these institutions are atrocious and students are increasingly being saddled with unmanageable debt. Recent studies show that college learning results, particularly for minority students, are often terrible. These are, in other words, precisely the students progressives should care most about, people who are desperately in need of a good education at a reasonable price and who will form the heart of the future electorate. A good example of the kind of initiative progressives should support—in the face of for-profit textbook corporations currently trying to fight it—is the new federal program providing $2 billion to community colleges to develop online course materials available to everyone, for free, under a Creative Commons license. 

via The New Republic

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