How Long Until Online College Courses Make Our Universities Obsolete?

Are our Universities becoming obsolete due to their cost structures and tuition costs? What good is getting a degree if it economically enslaves you for a decade or more? What good are degrees for which there are not jobs or career path? Learning something for the sake of learning it is great, but that is a luxury, not a viable career opportunity. If the cost structures for the Universities came down so too could the tuition costs – why have big buildings and all those facilities if you can teach the same courses online?

There was an interesting article on April 6, 2014 in the Ventura County (California) Star Newspaper titled; “Business Degree Going Online – CSU Channel Islands to Offer Program in Fall,” by Jean Cowden Moore which noted that the California State University set up the class to help single parents when attending class would be a hardship or military personnel that cannot get to class due to their service.

Additional students would include career business people that cannot take the time to get to the University but need to get their business degree even if they hadn’t yet completed it, perhaps a few units short. The price would be $400 per unit. Talk about a high profit margin, the entire class is mostly online. Get this – there is a waiting list for these online classes which will be offered to perhaps 100 that qualify on a special basis due to needs and circumstances. This is the beginning folks.

The price per unit will come down, and more classes offered, eventually, why would anyone want to actually go to the college or any college for that matter? Just think if we had such classes available to everyone, that $400 per unit class could be more in line with the Udemy Online University website where classes start at $20 to $40.00 and you get the same information and no worries about paying off college debt upwards of $50,000 or more.

It is for this shear reason that the future of Universities is in jeopardy and soon the bubble will burst as the student loan default rate hits 50% and 1.5 Trillion Dollars outstanding. That’s the path we are on. Right now, Congress is talking about a Student Loan bailout of $108 Billion and that wouldn’t even fix the current problem completely – what we have now is a runaway financial bubble in the student loan space, and it is getting quite serious. Please think on this.

University Degree Courses – 8 Things to Consider Before Applying

Once you have made the decision to become a student and apply for a university degree course, there are a number of factors you must consider to ensure you make the right degree choice. There is the university’s reputation, the city you are planning to go to, the accommodation facilities, and of course the degree course itself. In this article we are going to look at the 8 aspects of a University degree course you need to consider before applying to enrol on a particular course.

1. Length of degree – all degrees differ but the majority are set over a period of 3 years. Some more vocational degrees such as medicine and law will be for as long as 5 or 6 years so it is important to check from the outset just how long you will be at the university for.

2. Cost of degree – there has been a lot of press coverage of tuition fees over the last 5 years and for good reason. Going to university has become an expensive matter and so finding out exactly what those tuition fees are will be important, particularly if you will need to live on the campus as well and need to pay accommodation fees.

3. Will I get a job at the end of the course – the relative job prospects across different university degree courses can be pretty big. A student who has applied to do medicine or law will have a decent chance of getting a job at the end of their studies, whereas someone studying golf course design or anthropology may well find the job marketplace a little more challenging.

4. How competitive is it to get on the course – coupled with the job prospects, it is important to consider the level of competition to do the course in the first place. Find out how many places are available and how many students usually apply for those places, and be realistic about how well you will do in your HE studies, as this is what conditional UCAS offers are based on.

5. How many hours a week – not all courses take up 40 hours per week plus weekends, some in fact can be as little as 8 hours per week with a requirement for students to study in their own time as well. Consider what you want – a system akin to a school classroom where you spend the whole day studying with fellow students, or one where you spend many hours alone self – learning.

6. How the degree course is assessed – university degree courses are assessed either through examinations, dissertations, or practical work. Most are judged on a combination of the 3. Consider how you would feel most comfortable and look at courses which offer you the assessment you are looking for. If you find revision difficult and exams stressful, do what you can to look for courses with a good emphasis on coursework, such as dissertations and practical work.

7. Is there an internship/placement program – many courses nowadays offer the opportunity to go and work in industry either during the holidays or for a full year. Needless to say, these internships provide brilliant experience of the world of work, as well as getting a foot in the door at a potential employer. University degree courses offering internships can be lucrative.

8. Can I do part of the degree abroad – some university degree courses, particularly language based courses, offer the option to go and study abroad for a year at a partner university. If you like to travel and/or plan to live abroad in the future, then these courses will give you a good insight into what it is like and whether it is for you. It is also a useful CV item to show you can manage on your own in a foreign country.

Searching for the right university degree course needn’t be as difficult as it first appears. If you have a broad idea of where you want to be and what you want to study then you are already ahead of most of your peers. When you do look at courses, consider these 8 pieces of advice and apply them to the courses you are considering to make sure you pick the right university degree course.