Online learning is a key tool to fixing the problems with the U.S. higher education system, according to William G. Bowen, president emeritus of Princeton. > Bowen recently spoke to Stanford University’s faculty and staff about, what he called, the “cost disease” in higher education as part of the Tanner Lectures on Human Values.
While Bowen doesn’t believe that the residential model of a college education is going to fade away just yet, he does believe that a blended approach to higher education can provide a way for universities to reduce the cost burden. He emphasized that even top-tier institutions have to adopt more online components in order to adapt.
According to Bowen, the upward pressure of pursuing reputation at elite universities has helped costs spiral out of control. Additionally, the redundant, and often wasteful, business model of the residential university leads to an ingrained institutional inflexibility.
Bowen said that, despite outer pressures, the state of higher education is not going to completely change overnight and that even a decade will not be enough time for a new paradigm to emerge.
Follow Alex Wukman on Twitter @AlexWukmanCMN