Gee! this is a very crowded day - nearly sixty four presentations. Many of the day's presentations are focused on Open Educational Resource and Learning Analytics. Looks like these are major tranformation times for all levels of education. New technologies are emerging to enhance (or disrupt) old systems. Technologies have advanced beyond online deliveries to interractive learning experiences. This early morning general session is on Shapiung the Future of Education. The Hall is full and many are standing. Not surprising. Prof. David Wiley is known to many as an educational revolutionary who preaches about a world in which students listen to lectures online or on all types of mobile devices - all for free. Science laboratories are virtual and digital textbooks are free. He introduced the concept of 4-Rs - reusing, revising, remixing and redistribution of educational materials. Virtual institutions like Western Gorvernors University are already pushing this with "success". Well, success - at least for now - is measured only by the interest shown by it's "students". Wiley believes OER, when combined with Learning Analytics can create new oportunities for continuous quality improvement in education.
Question time lead to the discussion on the the next level embarked on by University of People. Ooops, I am hearing this for the first time. Tuition-free online university? Students learn from peers online or wherever they can get the material from. Yes, the university has course a catalogue no classes are required. Students, when they feel they are ready, take examinations based the required course materials. Uof People, when licensed, can grant degrees to graduation students. I hope my future doctor does not see this.