The front page of today’s Wall Street Journal has three articles that could have been the subject of this post: “Europeans Shared Spy Data With US,” “SAC Set To Admit Insider Trading,” and “Canceled Policies Heat Up Health Fight.” Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2013 A1 http://on.wsj.com/9Yqa5u
But that’s not what I am going to highlight today.
“First-of-Its-Kind Online Master’s Draws Wave of Applicants,” Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2013 A7, http://on.wsj.com/HuKhDB
Georgia Tech’s MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) for a Master’s in computer science degree draws twice as many applicants in three weeks as the residential Master’s program does in a year. Cost: 85% less than the $44,000 for the residential program. 79% of applicants were US citizens, versus 9% for the residential program.
Universities are clearly in the information (or perhaps knowledge) delivery business. Does is surprise anyone that online delivery costs less? Will the degree be equal in value? What controls does the university need to put in place to prevent gaming the system? Does this put a focus on testing rather than class participation? What are the plusses, minuses and interesting aspects of this?