The Audacity: Thrun Learns A Lesson and Students Pay

So many Thrun reactions ~ they almost need an aggregation page or Storify all their own…for all I know, one or both are in the making. Reviewing the Audacity “lesson” from the perspective of her own research area, Tressie MC shows us what others seem to have missed but we all should have caught right off.

tressiemc

Sebastian Thrun, founder of Udacity, one of the most high-profile private sector attempts to “disrupt” higher education discovered inequality this week. Thrun has spent the last three years dangling the shiny bauble of his elite academic pedigree and messianic vision of the future of higher education before investors and politicos. He promised nothing short of radically transforming higher education for the future by delivering taped classroom lessons of elite professors through massive open online courses.So what went wrong?

After low performance rates, low student satisfaction and faculty revolt, Thrun announced this week that he has given up on MOOCs as a vision for higher education disruption.    The “godfather of free online education” says that the racially, economically diverse students at SJSU,“were students from difficult neighborhoods, without good access to computers, and with all kinds of challenges in their lives…[for them] this medium is not a good fit.” It seems disruption…

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