Friday, October 7, 2016

CURMUDGUCATION: College Digitized and Privatized

CURMUDGUCATION: College Digitized and Privatized:

College Digitized and Privatized



Slice the "a" from 'audacity" and you have Udacity, the leading purveyor of for-profit, on-line college. Udacity is the dead of digitizing, the maharajah of MOOCkery. In them, we can see everything in the digitally privatized future face of higher ed that some folks love and other folks find appalling.



Born in 1967, Sebastian Thrun came from Germany and found a place as a Stanford professor and Google VP. He was the founder of Google X, the big geeky exploratory part of Google, and he has had a hand in everything from hoverboards to self-driving cars.

Thrun is also one of the co-parents ofUdacity, an on-line digitized set of courses that can earn you, among other things, nanodegrees, which appear to be the same basic idea as micro-credentials, but which sound slightly more academically legit. Udacity started out as a few computer courses offered for free by Stanford, and its nanodegree offerings still seem primarily tech oriented, with everything from software debugging to interactive rendering to software development to web design to inscrutable-to-laypeople programs like full stack web developer. Plus a couple of Google-specific programs. And currently their most hugely popular offering is one "taught" by Thrun himself-- Self-Driving Car Engineer. SDCE has pulled huge numbers of interested customers students for the course that will cost $2,400 for three twelve-week terms.

The usefulness, effectiveness, and educational validity of Massively Open On-line Courses has been 
CURMUDGUCATION: College Digitized and Privatized:





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