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Thursday, September 25, 2014

An interesting new college model - Minerva

Excellent article about a new innovative college – Minerva (named after the Roman goddess of wisdom). 

Minerva does not see itself competing with the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) like Coursera and the Khan Academy. Instead they view the content and lectures in these new entrants as complementary to what they offer and believe that fee online content will get even better and more extensive over time.

I hope that we see many new entrants in the post-secondary world of education.  We need massive trial and error to break down many of the conventions that are restricting us from delivering more learning and more job creation for the dollar spent. Maybe it is time to focus less on football, climbing walls, park-like campuses and more on education. I think that fewer high school grads should immediately head off to college, and maybe they only need two or three years before they can be ready to start or join a business or move onto the next phase of life.

One vestige that Minerva retained is “on-campus” residence halls. But the classes are not in person with a professor (who might be working from anywhere in the world) via an interactive on-line discussion and testing process of discussion, debate, and quizzes.

After the first year in San Francisco, each student changes locations each semester, allowing the student to experience different societies.  Today the other campuses are in Hong Kong, Buenos Aires, Berlin, London, Cape Town, Mumbai, New York and Sydney.

It is great to see some experimentation in higher education.

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