Professor David Wiley, leading innovator and advocate of open online learning, is writing terrific posts at Wired Campus as July guest blogger. His column today, “Digital Textbooks Call for New Business Models,” picks up on what I wrote earlier about the coming of free learning resources. Here is some from the Wiley vision:
In the online era, the competitive nature of educational materials has disappeared. While Selma is running calculations in the online chemistry laboratory, another million students can be using it too; while Nick is exploring genetics in the online simulator, another million students can too. It’s just like when you read the news on CNN.com while a million other people do. An online educational resource is different from a physical educational resource because every student on the campus can use the same online resource at the same time. We don’t need to ask each and every student on the campus to buy a copy — though that’s what publishers of online textbooks ask students to do.