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As a college freshman with a 40 year break before returning to finish my degree I am grateful for all the technology that made finishing college possible for me.  While I know that for-credit online learning is different than MOOCs, at the foundation of both are the sweeping changes in technology that have made each possible. Today professors can share their knowledge globally with those who have a computer, an Internet connection, a browser, and a thirst for knowledge.    While earning a graduate degree online in T & D will augment my retirement career, I believe learning via a MOOC will expose me to knowledge I never had time to invest in or just enjoy for the sake of learning with essentially no end purpose in mind. Moreover, there was a time when I could have only dreamed of attending a school like Stanford, Brown, or the like , but with the equalizer of technology and the platform of MOOCs layered on that, what would have been unimaginable just a generation ago is available to all today. Participation in my first MOOC is still sometime in the future, but it is absolutely a desirable model. I can only hope that colleges can uncover a way to monetize MOOCs such that that will continue to operate and, at some future time, will thrive!

 

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