Reputation still holds in education… for how long?

Readers of this blog who think that I am a bit mad would do well to go read the latest Cringely:

(…) reputation still holds in education, though its grip is weakening. (…) MIT threw videos of all its lecture courses – ALL its lecture courses – up on the web for anyone to watch for free. This was precisely comparable to SGI (remember them?) licensing OpenGL to Microsoft. What is it, then, that makes an MIT education worth $34,986? Is it the seminars that aren’t on the web? Faculty guidance? Research experience? Getting drunk and falling in the Charles River without your pants?

Compare this quote with my posts The 2 myths that gets students into ivy-league schools, Who needs your lectures?, and It may not matter all that much where you go to college.

Yep. Not long ago people bought European electronics because it was supposedly better. Now? These days are long gone.

Published by

Daniel Lemire

A computer science professor at the University of Quebec (TELUQ).

4 thoughts on “Reputation still holds in education… for how long?”

  1. I have discussed with several university graduates and they all say that they would have opted for a cheaper education, had they known what it would be like with so much student debt and only a bachelor’s degree to show for it.

  2. MIT still does not have *all* its courses available. And many of the ones that are listed as “available” on their OCW site only have syllabi on-line (and not video lectures).

  3. In fact, OCW has audio or video for a mere 16 EECS courses available online:

    And of those 16, only 5 have video for all the lectures available.

    The syllabus, assignments, and lecture notes for many more courses are available on OCW, but that hardly constitutes a replacement for being at MIT.

    Of course OCW is a great thing, but suggesting that it is anywhere close to a replacement or substitute for attending class at MIT (or anywhere similar) is pretty laughable, at least given the current state of affairs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To create code blocks or other preformatted text, indent by four spaces:

    This will be displayed in a monospaced font. The first four 
    spaces will be stripped off, but all other whitespace
    will be preserved.
    Markdown is turned off in code blocks:
     [This is not a link](

To create not a block, but an inline code span, use backticks:

Here is some inline `code`.

For more help see