Improving Public Universities - Is Online Education the Answer?
Should we make online education a permanent part of the school curriculum?
The University of California aims to use online education as a new revenue source, and a solution to challenges the public university system is facing - accessibility, efficiency and costs. One big issue is the persistent problem of overcrowding in first-year introductory courses such as Reading & Composition and General Chemistry. UC administrators are thus targeting these freshman classes in their initiative to make education cost-efficient and more accessible - by offering them online instead. Many professors are against the idea of "building educational models according to business practices"; online education, they claim, does not include important factors like personal engagement between teacher and student, a university's intellectual culture.. which impact a student's quality of learning.
But then again, times are changing and public universities continue to struggle for relevance. What do you think of expanding the role of online education as a solution to challenges faced by the UC? Pragmatic or counterproductive?