Let the debate rage on, but at the end of the day Coursera, Udacity, and edx are not swimming in the same red ocean as the rest of us in higher education are. The play is a total blue ocean strategy … let the sharks fight for the bloody scraps while they move to a less infested part of the waters. This is getting beyond interesting.
But even as that debate rages within the walls of prestigious universities, the facts on the ground are that millions of people worldwide want low-cost access to quality college courses that will lead to a degree that will get them a job, so they will be willing to try what Coursera and Udacity are offering.
And as an aside, I find it fascinating that the article uses a photo from Penn State under a creative commons license from flickr user pennstatelive — yeah that is our official PI account. Ahh, the open web … I wonder if anyone sees the potential irony in both promoting and damming openness? I guess it is ok for photos, but not for access to high quality learning spaces?