Online universities are becoming recognized and deliver more and more degrees.
We had touched upon this issue in the post “Another Institution under Siege from the Fourth Revolution: Universities – Will they Reinvent themselves in time?” with the example of Udacity, a revolutionary online university.
Traditional universities are now coming into play. The MIT had its courses available online for a while, but now it is a real rush towards the ever growing market of university degrees online.
Recently, the MIT and Harvard announced the creation of edX, a platform for online studying and learning (visit the edX site here and read the edX press release here). This platform has an exciting ambitious growth plan, offering classes online for free for millions (but probably paying degrees!).
This excellent post by OnlineUniversities.com, “8 nations leading the way in online education” summarizes the situation and what are the most advanced countries in the field of online education: USA, India, China, South Korea, Malaysia, UK, Australia, South Africa. Many of these countries are geographically very large or serve as a hub for a large region, offering education opportunities for many.
Online education cannot probably replace face-to-face education in all disciplines but it can in many scientific ones. It is an incredible occasion for people to grow themselves for free. It is an incredible occasion to grow the knowledge base of humankind into the remotest corners of the planet.
Those countries and those universities that will miss this revolution will trail behind and eventually disappear into oblivion. When online universities will do more than just broadcasting, when they will unleash the power of collaboration, they will dwarf Industrial Age universities. This will happen soon.
When will you start taking the classes you always dreamed of taking online, for free?