- Harvard University and the University of California, Berkeley are transforming the online learning experience in their graduate schools of business, using enhanced technology to increase production value and to simulate an in-person classroom experience.
- The course enhancements are a form of adaptive learning, which can help administrators to determine which strategies keep students most engaged in coursework, which can lead to better academic performance.
- An increasing number of students prefer online courses to in-classroom experiences, but still seek opportunities to network and to engage with faculty and fellow students.
Elite colleges are piloting distance education enhancement in popular programs like business, which should signal to smaller institutions that the future lies in creating similar experiences for a future student pool that will grow more eager for the convenience and affordability of online learning.
As students get older and have fewer resources to pay for a dying business model of in-class instruction, officials will need to focus fundraising and pedagogical development on technology that delivers industrially-relevant curriculum in an engaging way. Training faculty, managing the tech integration, and maintaining racial equity in faculty and student recruitment will still be considerations, but indeed, it is a future that has already arrived in the eyes of the federal Department of Education and states seeking more performance for fewer appropriations.