MOOC(Massively Open Online Courses) are being played as the great innovation of education and it’s downfall. So which one is it? I believe it is both, its going to change the landscape, but I can guarantee that the old model everyone is use to is going to die. Teachers and administrators should be afraid because it marks an end to the easy money and laziness that has plagued higher education. Knowledge will be freely accessible and open to all(now I mean truly open, not like some of the scams that are going behind the scenes). Big top rich schools are leading the charge but they too forgot that the goal of education is to be free and open. Such things as selling licenses for courses and at outrageous rates tells me that the “old guard” hasn’t yet seen the big picture yet. They still think they can make big and fill the school coffers. They believe that by having the brand and the power of a “diploma” is going to see them through. They are gravely mistaken for the education system is going to see the greatest liberation it has ever seen. The idea of “credentialism” as we know it must end, if we are truly aiming for a better global education on a grand scale. For a piece of paper does not determine knowledge but merely that you have sat in a classroom, taken tests, finished homework, and completed projects.
Our education system is like a factory that wants to produce good little citizens that do what they are told and fit in the societal structure. Universities like Harvard, and MIT are not seeing where the long term goal of this will be. Eventually everyone, professionals, hobbyist, and others will be producing in one form or another their own original content where they may not offer “credits” or “diplomas” but like in the ancient times were merely reading made one more intelligent it will be the same with open online education. A person will be able to choose not from just “institutionalized” colleges but also from people from all walks of earth. It is a similar theme of “internet anarchy” which has revolutionized the music, film, and the publishing industry. The Copyright industry is still fighting piracy, alas the government still want to “withhold” dangerous information, and now education wants it to be 1985. Jokes on them. Internet and the philosophy it has unleashed is here to stay unless we all get unplugged. Change is constant and occurring and it has no mercy on anyone. These dead institutions act as if they can survive and maybe they have a chance to evolve and evolve themselves yet there will be casualties there always is. It is often not pretty but it is necessary for progress to evolve and develop.
In truth the education system has for too long gotten fat with money and laziness. It abused the economically poor students and wage laborers. It is a system designed only for the truly wealthy as it was originally intended when the university system was put in place in Europe. It is a new era and a new time where this no longer has to be true. A person no longer needs to mortgage away their future for the promise of a better tomorrow. It will be a future where people around the world can contribute to world of knowledge as Wikipedia, Piratebay, and Youtube have shown what global creators and collaborators can make possible. To deny our desire for knowledge right, wrong, complete, or incomplete is criminal. The truth is as the old barriers break down it can only benefit our own personal liberty of knowledge and if we as a species are so afraid of what that can bring than what does that say about ourselves?