Online Learning Update

March 29, 2013

Opportunity missed to increase online learning

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:10 am

By Frits Pannekoek, Calgary Herald

We in the [Canadian] post secondary system will, in the next while, be reflecting on the meaning of what amounts to an almost 15-per-cent real loss in budget power (7.2 per cent reduction in grant, a forgone two per cent that universities had been told last year to expect, and four-pe-cent to six-per-cent loss of purchasing power due to increasing costs). While this is devastating to a sector that was just beginning to rebuild its capacity and reputation, it could have forced the ministry and the post-secondary sector to reimagine a new future based on e-learning and collaboration. This is not to suggest the end of the “bricks and mortar” institutions – they are critical to the success and vitality of the Alberta system – only that the ministry and institutions must look at differing strategies for learner engagement including e-learning, MOOC’s (Massive Open Online Courses), e-texts and open learning resources. Post secondary institutions need to do their business more frugally and effectively. But that requires a new policy and funding tool kit built on a foundation of imagination and possibility.

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