Online degrees could make universities redundant, historian warns

Richard Adams, Apr 24, 2016
Commentary by Stephen Downes

This is an odd article that one the one hand says that Oxford should embrace online learning to increase access and remain relevant, and that it should go private (but raising its own endowment) so it doesn't have to respond to government demands that it, um, increase access. "We’ve moved a long way, but it’s very difficult recruiting from within the UK properly qualified undergraduates from the social and educational backgrounds that the state would like us to take people from," says Laurence Brockliss, author of Oxford’s official history. It's an odd sort of logic. By becoming a 'global university' Oxford could remain exclusive, yet still attract a culturally diverse mix off students. As for actually being accessible to poor people without a privileged educational background, well, let's just not go there.

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