Zócalo Public Square, a project of the Center for Social Cohesion at Arizona State University writes, "Free online courses, crowdsourcing, and big data are transforming the university from a gatekeeper to a public resource"
In 2001, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced it was going to put the university’s entire body of course materials online, for free. That meant syllabuses, as well as problem sets and exams—and their solutions. There were even going to be some video lectures online. In 2002, the MIT OpenCourseWare pilot project debuted with 32 courses. Today, according to MIT, 125 million visitors access material from 2,150 classes, including the very popular “Introduction to Computer Science and Programming,” which helps students feel confident about “writing small programs that allow them to accomplish useful goals.”
MIT’s creation of OpenCourseWare is credited with sparking a global movement to make educational resources free to access, adapt, and redistribute. It’s been over a decade and hundreds of universities now offer open course material online. The Internet has expanded its reach, computers have gone through several generations, and mobile phones are nearly ubiquitous. In this new environment, it’s clear that sitting down in front of a chalkboard with a spiral notebook and pen is an anachronism—but what else will be?
In advance of the Zócalo/Arizona State University event, “Will Technology Kill Universities?” we asked experts:
How will technology—from massive open online courses and web-based textbooks to big data collection—change universities?
The experts are:
Andy Miah, a professor and chair in science communication and future media at the University of Salford in Manchester, England.
Kui Xie, an associate professor in learning technologies and directs the Research Laboratory for Digital Learning at The Ohio State University.
Shai Reshef, the president and founder of University of the People.
Kathryn Eccles, a research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute and digital humanities champion at the University of Oxford.
Hans Johnson, a senior and Bren policy fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California.