The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has begun the most revolutionary experiment in the history of education, stretching all the way back to the pharaohs. It now gives away its curriculum to anyone smart enough to learn it. It has posted its curriculum on-line for free. These days, this means a staggering 1900 courses. This number will grow.
This is proof to the academic world that MIT regards its program as the best, and dares any other institution to prove otherwise, where everyone can see and compare. The free site validates the MIT T-shirt: HARVARD: Because not everyone can get into MIT.”
MIT has publicly stiffed its main rival for the title of the best science university on earth. That rival is the California Institute of Technology. CalTech will forever play catch-up to MIT on-line. It will be “We, Too On-line University.”
Students around the world can see for themselves that MIT has what it takes to be the best. They can test drive the entire curriculum.
Top students all over the world still want to attend MIT. They want a diploma that has MIT’s name on it. The free site does not reduce demand for an MIT diploma. It increases it.
MIT has up-ended several millennia of higher education.
Course outlines are no replacement for a professor/teaching assistant who oversees your work, a community where you work together with other smart minds and have access to state of the art equipment. You still need to have lectures and access to literature. If anything this is more like an author publishing the index of their book than giving you the entire thing for free…