Credibility Issue for Online Education and Outsource Education

Blog Post: Online University, from “Embedded in Academia” by John Regehr

I read this thought-provoking blog post mentioned one student from that university requested credit for taking the Stanford AI class. This semester, Stanford put three courses online free to register for the general public, including Artificial Intelligence, Database and Machine Learning. They provide video, and quiz, discussion forum. Students need to submit homework, and will get a completion certificate and ranking among classmates at the end. I actually registered for the database class, and thought it would be nice if I can get credit. There is student requesting! From the author’s update in the comments section of the blog post, the student’s request is not granted up to that day. Usually, if we need credit, we have to pay. We are paying for the credit, not the real education experiences. We can get the education experiences from Stanford for free, but not the credit! Although we cannot get the credit from our home institution, but maybe if we put that on resume, companies will consider that when we go to find a job?

This blog post also brought up an interesting idea that in the future, universities can simply contract out classes like Calculus to big organizations and universities. In this case, all other universities can contract out Artificial Intelligence, Database and Machine Learning to Stanford and pay part of tuition to Stanford. This will totally change the structure of higher education! I believe something revolutionary has to happen, if not this one!

There are lots of discussion about online learning. For example,

Connecting Informal and Formal Learning Experiences in the Age of Participatory Media

Make it a Two-Way connection: A Response to “Connecting Informal and Formal Learning Experiences in the Age of Participatory Media”

Connecting Informal and Formal Learning Experiences in the Age of Participatory Media: Commentary on Bull et al. (2008)

These articles are talking about how to connect informal learning on social media with formal classroom learning. I think the above blog post has a more revolutionary thought about where the Internet will lead the education to, and how the structure will change. It also brought up the credibility issues of taking free online courses.