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Both on-campus and online learning have advantages in how people learn, cost of education, accessibility, etc. The future MIT must combine the best on-campus experience with the best virtual experience offering the right material, through the right media, to the right target, to maximize the value of the educational experience. Determining how to invest, categorize and measure success I suspect all comes down to how the goals of this initiative are stated, measured and refined over time.

I am by no means an educational expert, but it would seem to me that on-campus research resources and personnel are more critical for some disciplines and no one can excel better than MIT at figuring out what those should be and how to tailor an educational experience not only to address these, but in a way which is flexible to new educational paradigms enabled by the tools of tomorrow. Similarly, leveraging today's tools to accelerate knowledge sharing and educational development for students with a focus on skills which help professionals excel would seem to be a natural step.

So going in with the assumption that there is no right answer, but instead the best path is an evolving solution which provides a framework for matching the best tools for the job to maximize results and a mechanism for "configuration management" of the overall educational strategy would provide the kind of continuous improvement environment in which we engineers can thrive. Why not have your cake and eat it too?

A New Financial Model, Improving accessibility and affordability, Education & Facilities, Educational experiences, Physical spaces, Global Implications of EdX, Global implications of edX, Beyond the residential campus, research, continuous improvement, framework, strategy