She's Doing An Elite MBA For Under $1,000 | LinkedIn
Interestingly, just last week I was in a video chatroom where they were debating on the value of online ed solutions like Coursera. I'm taking a writing class there, and I piped in with my opinion that it may be good for learning stuff on your own, such as punching up your writing skills, but that it wouldn't be sufficient to prepare you for a job in business. It seems that Laurie Pickard is gearing up to prove me wrong.
This is a discussion that needs to be had, obviously. If you read "DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education" by Anya Kamenetz, and a few of the other books like it, you'd see that there are a lot of people looking at this issue.
There are so many reasons today why traditional higher ed is not a good fit for many of us out there. One example would be the high cost to parents who send their kids out to college, pay a lot into it, and wind up having to pay even more $$ because instead of buckling down and studying, Jr. has been doing nothing but drinking, partying, and getting into trouble. Jr. then has to come back home, and, rather than gain an MBA type position, he has to work the fry station at McDonald's.
No disrespect to McDonalds, though, because as I recall when I worked there, they actually worked *with* me to work out a schedule where I could take some college classes. Not enough of the entry level workplaces out there are willing to do that these days.
As a person who's had to balance work and school, and now these days with an added load of having to take care of elderly parents, having an educational resource that I can slip into the narrow cracks of my free time is an immense blessing.
In this economy, people are less willing to shell out the bucks to an institution whose idea of improvement may be only beefing up the sports program, or a cosmetic overhaul of the cafeteria/food court. When you consider the ever growing unlikelihood that a brick and mortar degree will lead to a job, large colleges setting up free MOOCs may be their first effort at remaining relevant to the needs of the future workforce.