Online Ed: Teaching Millions or Making Millions?

A great new video from the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education (CFHE) raises serious questions about the claims and promises the online education industry is making about the quality of its higher education programs. The claims of online education companies like Coursera, edX, and Udacity are fantastical, they claim they will be able to educate the “next Steve Jobs living in rural Africa” but the research and the realities of internet access run counter to these claims.


The video, “Online Education: Teaching Millions or Making Millions?”, is part of a national grassroots campaign to inform families, educators, higher education leaders, and policymakers about the serious concerns of faculty members and educational staff who are on the front lines of higher education.

“Our members have developed and implemented quality online learning tools for many years and we appreciate the value of these tools,” said United University Professions President Fred Kowal. “But as this CFHE video depicts, online education has become a billion dollar business motivated more by profits than quality education for our students.”

The video is based on three reports by CFHE —“The ‘Promises’ of Online Higher Ed: Access, Costs, Profits”. They reveal strong evidence that widely publicized claims about the effectiveness of the online education industry’s products do not hold up.

The video was discussed yesterday on Huffington Post Live with live input from the public. Watch the archived segment here.

[Nicole Hochsprung with thanks to Denyce Duncan Lacy and Donald Feldstein of UUP]

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