Monday, March 10, 2014

Tuition Net Increases to Poorest Students Threaten Access to Higher Ed

I read with great interest Jon Marcus and Holly K. Hacker's Colleges Are Quietly Shifting The Burden Of Tuition Increases To Poor Families from the Hechinger Report on Huffington Post. I don't want to editorialize the issues raised specifically in the article in the context discussed, but want to point out that this entire issue—the evolving landscape of access to higher education as impacted by issues discussed herein—provides profound context for the unfolding discussions regarding MOOCs and their role in higher education.

I believe that the most imminent threat MOOCs present to traditional higher education is the allure of high-quality free/low-cost degrees for the highest achieving, most independent and self-motivated learners. In addition to potentially losing them out of enrollment and retention data sets, we stand to lose their power as peer learners to enhance learning outcomes for everyone enrolled.

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