Distance learning has broken into the mainstream of higher education. But at the campus level, many colleges still know precious little about how best to organize online programs, whether those programs are profitable, and how they compare to face-to-face instruction in terms of quality.
That is what Kenneth C. Green, director of the Campus Computing Project, concludes in a study released today in conjunction with the Western Cooperative for Educational Telecommunications.
Though Blackboard's critics have worried the company might monopolize the market for e-learning tools, competition continues to surface -- notably from companies that once were more focused on the administrative side of campus computing.
At many faculty gatherings these days, one hears quips and complaints about for-profit higher education. Professors who value what they consider essential and eroding traditions -- a significant tenure-track faculty and the centrality of the liberal arts, for example -- resent the adjunct-heavy, career-education dominant model of higher education that is widely used in for-profit higher ed. As a result, many faculty advocates are skeptical not only about for-profit higher education, but about the growing number of alliances between nonprofit colleges and for-profit colleges.