Replace You With A Simple Download

Here is an interesting Governor Pawlenty interview from The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Towards the end the governor says something like:

Can’t I just pull [course lectures] down on my iPhone or iPad whenever the heck I feel like it, from wherever I feel like it? And instead of paying thousands of dollars, can I pay $199 for iCollege instead of 99 cents for iTunes?

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What he says should exist arrived at least 4  years ago. Instead of being named iCollege, it is named iTunesU. Even better is MIT’s OpenCourseWare. Instead of being $199, these are FREE! If iCollege / iTunesU / OCW was the solution to eliminating higher education, then it should be on its deathbed. Instead, during the same period, the number of students attending universities has exploded. Why? The information isn’t why students attend higher education. Like the governor says, that is cheap.

Parents and students think to get a high paying job, these kids need a degree to allow them to be qualified. Higher education isn’t about an information dump. Its about kids getting vetted so employers have something to select the people mostly likely qualified for their job openings. That’s what Apple or someone will need to create in order for iTunesU to replace higher education.

Since jobs dried up, kids went to college to improve their qualifications so when jobs flourish again, they will be better situated to get one.

The Chronicle of Higher Education coverage.