A larger number of people is being involved in logging into massive open online courses (MOOCs) and following courses of their interest for free from the top universities worldwide. This is just one way of the distance learning manner of reshaping the way institutions offer learning services.
Michael B. Horn, Co-founder and Executive Director of Innosight Institute, specializes in disruption of online education and on November 8, 2012 has had his presentation at Educause 2012 conference in Denver. The Education Dive audience was able to hear his talk about the changes that are currently underway in the new models in higher education. Horn did not stop at higher ed and he also address how MOOCs will influence high schools.
His presentation “Disrupting College,” included the 5 online education advantages on how e-learning will influence the traditional education systems:
1. New competition for the existing institutions . According to Horn University professors, Are really good at research, are not always really good at teaching and learning. This comes from the fact that they get incentivized around , not what business models are built around.
He proposed that even if established companies find ways to bring new technology to market, new startups can often be the ones that make the same technology succeed, because they are not chained to existing business models.
MOOC providers, like Coursera and http://www.udacity.com business models are still being formed. The tendency is that they are going to be more flexible than existing higher ed institutions alone, since they find ways to make models work.
2. Services decentralization
According to Horn by 2014, 50% of students in American post-secondary education will enroll in at least one online course. He did not suggest that online learning companies would replace universities and colleges, but that they will likely cut smaller services and functions that exist in traditional schools, by replacing them with online courses or online aid.
3. Various student’s need
Different students, have different learning needs, at different times explains Horn. However, this situation might provide big opportunities for disruptive models to step in and offer more efficient solutions to individualized instruction.
Academics will most probably argue about the roles that students’ varying needs, multiple intelligences, learning styles, talents and motivations play, should be considered, but online learning is inherently modular and has to serve related demands in the marketplace.
4. Money worth education
There was a question from the audience whether MOOCs might play a role in cases where students are not interested in getting their money’s worth from a quality education, but rather just want credit hours or class completions that provide a means to an end. Horn explained that the line of thought is right and that MOOCs can be the answer in some cases. In these situations, courses that the students will attend for free, will be a bonus for the students’ budget, as well as for their educational upbringing.
5. K-12 online education
According to Horn, the influence of distance learning on K-12 will be increasing. He explained that he thinks that in many cases, there will be a bigger impact on K-12, than higher education, particularly in advanced placement courses and so forth. It is going to be a massive disruption of AP courses, because if you one gets a credit from MIT for physics or a 5 on the AP physics course which one is going to be more valuable? He suspects that the MOOCs will be more affordable in future.
In addition to this Horn believes that I we have not seen the other “shoe drop on” yet, but thinks it is going to be a profound impact, mainly in high school. Through the world there are 70 million students around that have no access to primary education and 200 million who have no access to secondary education. This will be an excellent tool for the future generations to get their K-12 education for free, at high quality.
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Here is the overview of the e-learning conferences in 2012 and 2013: