MIT and OCW 2.0

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.

3 thoughts on “MIT and OCW 2.0”

  1. Hi David,
    I find your forecast both interesting and depressing. I wonder whether you think we will see an increase in universities offering distance courses for credit? I am also interested in whether you see the notion of distance and flexibility being connected. For instance I see a growing demand for ‘any time’, ‘anywhere’ courses for credit being made available even at universities that are local for the student. Might this lead to a continuation of OCW initiatives?
    If not, then how will traditional f2f universities cope in a world where, even without formal OCW initiatives, an increasing amount of learning content is being made freely available online informally?
    Best Wishes

  2. Dear David .
    I read about you in many places. I agree with you in many many instances. I highly appreciate your values , thoughts, and works.

    (((To me OCW is ONLINE Courses. That is MIT OCW + all lectures video recorded at MIT and/ or all online courses . )))

    I had said to Mr. Carson ( at that time responsible for OCW ) of MIT 6 years ago that OCW cannot be sustainable since it is free. I suggested to charge a small fee and add all video recordings of the lectures to the content, so that they would be whole ONLINE courses for the whole world. Bill GATES noted that also in his visit to MIT .

    I have a model for all ivy leagues universities + most competitive universities + highly competitive univerties + competitive universities of USA ONLINE Programs and/or OCW programs.

    MODEL :
    1.- There are almost 100-200 University students in the world. Including India and China.

    2.- All above USA Universities ONLINE programs or only online courses can be adopted by local universities in each country.

    3.- Local university assignes an instructor or professor as a facilitator of the ONLINE course. He supervises everything locally as if he is in USA universty.

    4.- He manages homeworks, forums, midterms, finals.
    And gives final grades to students and university credits.

    5.- After completion of , say 120 semester credit online and/or f2f courses students are granted a degree by local university.

    6.- Since local employers know that that university takes courses from Harvard and MIT and Stanford, they hire the graduates of that university in the first place .

    7.- Be careful . I classify universities.
    Not everybody in the world can go to Harvard or MIT .
    But at least some can go COMPETITIVE ones.

    8.- This model requires no classroom investment, minimum instructor qualification by the local universities including USA colleges and less competitice universities in the USA .

    9.- Say ;
    every student takes 50 % online and % 50 f2f
    courses. Then cost of education is almost halved.
    But quality is 100 % up by Harvard, Wisconsin etc .

    10.- With this model ONLINE course providers of good USA
    Universities can make 4-5 BILLION $ per year.
    Sure it will take time but not money .
    But it requires VISION .

    11.- America will be most respected country in the world due to what it did to world education system . Plus everybody in the world will speak ENGLISH .

    TO Mark :

    Sorry Mark. f2f universitiers will extinct anyhow within 30 years . They have to plan ahead of this.
    ONLINE is for millions. We need only certain number of
    most competitive + highly competitive + competitive RESEARCH universities .
    All these research universities will serve 18-20 million higher education students in USA. + all 200 million global online higher education students of the world . And USA Research Universities will make money ( 4-5 BILLION $ per year ) and therefore they will increase quality every year with new technologies and new knowledge.
    [email protected] from Turkey .

  3. Sorry. I have to add that

    All local universities of the world will pay a nominal fee of $ 40-50 per online course per student per semester to RESEARCH universities of USA providing ONLINE Courses.

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