Online Learning Update

December 21, 2011

Advancing the Open Online Learning Front

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

By Steve Kolowich, Inside Higher Ed

MIT stamp or no, that is still a big step, says Kevin Carey, policy director at Education Sector, a D.C. think tank. “I think this is the future,” says Carey, who has written on the emerging relevance of nontraditional credentials. “It’s just the logical next step for the ethic behind the [open educational resources] movement,” he says. In interviews, MIT officials took care to emphasize that MITx is not meant to supplant the traditional “residential education” that the university cultivates in its Cambridge, Mass., enclave. “Without MIT, there is no MITx,” he says. MIT might not have anything to fear from its foray into open education, but less prestigious institutions might see some of their students opting to take certain courses at MITx instead of their own, says Carey. But the Rose-Hulman dean said institutions such as his may not be able to avoid the question for much longer. “Education is certainly changing,” he says, “and online education and distance education is going to force us to examine what we do and what we give credit for.”

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