You still have to pay if you want to earn course credit, but what you don't have to do is leave your dorm room. On Thursday's show Leo and Patrick want to know if you would like to earn your college degree online. Is watching a lecture on the Web better or worse than sitting in the 50th row of a lecture hall? Vote in our online poll and post your opinions in the Talkback section below.
Here's the story
Cnet's News.com reports on MIT's experimental pilot program to offer all of its 2000 courses online. The program, called MIT OpenCourseWare (we geeks love those intercaps) is based on the open-source model of software development. It currently offers online material for 32 classes, with more on the way.
We are fighting the commercialization of knowledge, says MIT spokesman Jon Paul Potts in the Cnet article, much in the same way that open-source people are fighting the commercialization of software.
Only accepted, paying MIT students can use the materials to earn course credits. However, MIT hopes that the world will benefit from free access to this information, even if it doesn't come with an MIT diploma.
This could potentially mean an end to traditional lecture classes at MIT and colleges across the nation. Already, Cnet reports, MIT professors are noticing lower classroom attendance. Hey, that's what they get for giving an 8 a.m. lecture.