The role of public higher education in a rapidly changing world rose to prominence last week with two developments: the University of Virginia’s governance debacle (see local commentary here) and the announcement of Gov. Scott Walker’s Flexible Online Degree initiative.
As noted in the previous article by another contributor, these two events have more in common than one might surmise from the above. Both highlight the growing problem of affordability of four-year degrees, and both have their roots in the notion that the traditional model of university education has become outdated and inefficient. In both cases, online education as a substitute for bricks-and-mortar lecture halls is/was touted as a solution. (more…)