This article points out the varying trends in higher education. In the current learning dynamic, one has many options. Some can pursue a more traditional education by way of a four year university or do what the students enrolled in this course are doing; seeking education by way of the Internet. Colleges, universities and educational opportunities in general have evolved throughout history. To save myself and my readers from a long history lesson, I will narrow it down to the last few decades.
If you look back to our parents, or even grandparents generations, you can see there has been a transition not only in curriculum, but also in how we receive our education. We are able to further our educations despite not being able to physically be in a classroom. Bill Gates predicted that “place-based activity in college will be five times less important than it is today. ” (Aoun, par. 1). The author points out that higher learning is available to many that would not have the opportunity due to location, careers, or another important aspect; sufficient funding.
For example, students can attend larger colleges by way of satellite locations, online learning opportunities, overseas and international opportunities and still have the option to decide between many degrees. The main point of the article is not that one is better than the other or will eventually replace the other. Instead, these added variations are an enhancement to today’s educational opportunities. I completely agree with the author’s perspective that just because one chooses an alternate path to pursue higher education, it does not mean that the end state of one is better than the other.
Bill Gates is right to have faith in the ability of online education to empower new generations of students to advance their educations. But if past is prologue, online education will remain a component of–not the answer to–the diverse system that has cemented the leadership of American higher education in the world (Aoun, par. 16). It is through technological advancement and the evolution of education that someone in my position is able to serve in the military ull time, maintain a family and still have the opportunity to attend college.
If education would have remained a “brick and mortar” institution, I would have to wait until my service was complete which would limit my career opportunities in the future. The evolution of education can only be seen as beneficial to today’s society, economy and to the advancement of our culture as a whole. I feel this article would be very useful in a research essay due to the fact that the author does not take a biased approach to the issue.
He does point out the very different aspects, good and bad, of different ways education is offered and the additional activities that may or may not be present during place based learning. I don’t necessarily agree that the lack of peer to peer contact, school spirit, or community activities involved with campus life will make a person more or less successful. Throughout our lives we are faced with diversity, new opportunities, new ways of thinking and the chance to learn from different experiences. Lifelong learning is about opening yourself up to all of these things no matter whether it’s for a degree or for personal enrichment.