I liked this post I saw yesterday from Will Richardson and he was musing about how to give people useful credit for taking Open Courseware classes. I had two thoughts about this.
- Being able to give credit for Open Courseware classes is the same problem as creating accurate assessments in school today. When a person graduates from college with a degree, what do employers really know about their skill set? They have to take it on faith that the university won’t pass them without certain minimum standards. This of course is enforced with the accreditation system. People will pay a huge sum of money to learn stuff where an ever increasing amount can be learned independently.
- So what if we find a good way of assessing skill level and thus an alternate credentialing system? Answer: The current university model becomes obsolete.
Here’s my radical thought. Right now, universities have record enrollments, and are making more money then they have ever before. I think really though they are hanging by a thin, fraying thread.