“Hot Topics” is back on #CollegeChat July 19, 2011 at 9 pm Eastern and 6 pm Pacific. During “Hot Topics” we will be discussing whether Bill Gates is right. Is the future of higher education online?
Last August during the Techonomy conference in Lake Tahoe, Techcrunch reported that Bill Gates spoke about the not too distant future:
Five years from now on the web for free you’ll be able to find the best lectures in the world,” Gates said. “It will be better than any single university.”
But college needs to be less “place-based,” according to Gates. Well, except for the parties, he joked.
But his overall point is that it’s just too expensive and too hard to get these upper-level educations. And soon place-based college educations will be five times less important than they are today.
Free Education Online
There are already examples of Gate’s vision of free education online. According to Guidetoonlinsschools.com recent post, “Web-Based Education: Cheaper, More Accessible, Better Quality” :
If you were going to look for present day examples of Gates’ free, non place-based education, two good places to start are the Khan Academy and MIT’s OpenCourseWare. Khan Academy is a non-profit website, which has over 2,000 free videos covering K-12 subjects and topics like SAT prep. The videos reflect Gates’ ideal: at about 10 minutes each, they’re short in length but high in quality.
MIT’s OpenCourseWare project has been an experiment in free, web-based college courses. For each class, students can access lectures, syllabi, and other course materials. These materials were also designed to be stand-alone and easily digestible—lecture notes replace clunky textbook chapters, and the best materials from several traditional MIT classes are combined to create one comprehensive online course. In 2010, OpenCourseWare had almost 100 million page views.
New to Twitter?
In order to participate in the chat, attendees will need to have a Twitter account. To sign up for a Twitter account, go to http:// twitter.com. The easiest way to follow the chat is to use TweetChat (http://tweetchat.com). Simply log in to TweetChat with your Twitter information (email or username followed by password) and then enter in CollegeChat without the “#” and you will be placed into the chat room with only those participating in #CollegeChat. More detailed information about signing up for Twitter and using TweetChat can be found at http://pathwaypr.com/how-to-participate-in-a-twitter-chat .
#CollegeChat is a live bi-monthly conversation intended for teens, college students, parents, and higher education experts on Twitter. Questions for each #CollegeChat edition can be sent to Theresa Smith, the moderator of #CollegeChat via http://Twitter.com/collegechat, by entering questions online on the CollegeChat Facebook page at http://ht.ly/1XIqV , or by email. CollegeChat can also be found on Twitter at http://Twitter.com/collegechat.
Listen to Bill Gates talk about the Khan Academy, a fantastic online resource with more than 2200 free tutorials. The tutorials cover everything from “arithmetic to physics, finance, and history”.
Check out the library of information and tutorials .