In a letter to the editor in June 2013, I begged our local Cal Poly leaders to find a way to reduce the costs of higher education to make it affordable to more students (and reduce student loan debt).
Well, highly rated Georgia Tech beat our highly rated Cal Poly to the punch, offering a two-year master’s degree in computer science in their Massive Open Online Coursework (MOOC) program. The cost of this degree? Just $6,600 vs. the $45,000 that Georgia Tech normally charges, as reported in the Tribune on Aug. 18.
Georgia Tech’s program is expected to attract up to 10,000 students from around the world. It will help address the nation’s growing shortage of qualified workers in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. Anyone with a broadband connection will have access to some of the finest computer science instruction in the world. MOOCs are expected to become one of the most significant catalysts of innovation in higher education.
Cal Poly, it’s still not too late to follow Georgia Tech’s move and be an innovator in affordable higher education in California. What do you say — is anybody listening?