If you subscribe to any education-related newsletters – or about a billion like I do – your screen drips with ads for online degrees and distance learning opportunities.
… and sites that offer, facilitate and aggregate online degrees and distance learning opportunities. At a certain point you just stop paying attention.
Throw into the mix that some programs are good, some are bad and some are even worse.
“An Online Degree by Distance Learning” – aptly named, I suppose – gives the quick and dirty version. Not a million choices, just the top three as determined by AODDL.
Do any of the programs interest me? Not especially, and my ‘top three’ list would likely be different, but I do appreciate the simplicity. The reality is that, as far as online-only outfits go, they’re all quite similar. If it’s accredited, you’re in business. There’s more variation in quality between brick-and-mortar institutions that offer online degrees.
Here’s a few recent news items about online programs:
- “Online Degrees Appealing Option for Soldiers.” I’ll admit that I hadn’t considered how well online study would fit for someone in active duty. It’s an interesting facet of the online ed debate that I haven’t seen covered.
- Scholarships for online special education programs. And aren’t there state/city systems offering bonuses for special ed teachers?
- Good Lord, there are courses offered via cell phone. I think the “it just isn’t convenient” excuse might be drying up.
And while you’re at it, check out Hubert Dreyfus’ “On the Internet,” a seminal treatise on the promises and pitfalls of mass education via the internet. The second edition comes out in a month – the first edition was one of the more provocative, important books I’ve read in the last 5 or 6 years.