About a year and a half ago I began writing about OCW 2.0 – OCWs whose long-term sustainability is tied to business models that include “up-selling” some OCW visitors the opportunity to earn university credit. Specifically, I predicted that:
Every OCW initiative at a university that does not offer distance courses for credit will be dead by the end of calendar 2012.
Many assumed that I was really only talking about every OCW initiative except MIT’s. But I really did mean every OCW initiative. Today, the Chronicle’s article MIT Looks to Make Money Online reports:
But as MIT grapples with dwindling resources, generating revenue from distance education is clearly an idea under consideration by university officials. In December, a panel suggested the following possibilities in a major report:
- Creating an “extension studies” program for continuing education using a combination of on-campus courses, distance learning, and an enhanced OpenCourseWare Web site. Estimated revenue potential: $10-million.
- Creating select master’s-degree programs that would be taken primarily via online education. Estimated revenue potential: $30-million.
- Offering some undergraduate subjects for credit via e-learning. Estimated revenue potential: $60-million.
The end of 2012 is still a long way away… There’s plenty of time left to be right.