There is Big Money in MOOCs
Chances are that you have heard about many of the popular MOOC platforms today. Services like Coursera, edX , and Udacity are starting to become household names due to the strategic alliances and marketing choices they have made in the past year and a half.
One this is for sure, MOOCs are here to stay – and they are here to make money.
In fact, investors are lining up to get behind these MOOC platforms. Coursera even recently secured tens of millions of dollars (again) in additional funding. If there is one thing that is always a certainty, it is that investors will want to see their money back, and with interest.
To be honest, I take no issue with MOOCs turning a profit – the same way that higher education needs to realize income, it only makes sense that MOOCs are able to do the same. There are real expenses to contend with when you have millions of site visitors and users per day.
Currently it is not quite clear exactly how the MOOCs will turn a profit, but there is some speculation. The infographic below (created by atf.org) details some ways that the investors will see a return on their investment.
When monetization is finally implemented on a large scale, I wonder if the user experience will suffer or improve? There have been some general complaints about the quality of the learning experienced offered by MOOCs, in particular the logistics component of a course.
I would hope that in the end it means these platforms have the ability to hire more support and technical personnel, which in turn would benefit the users.
What do you think? Are you looking forward to when your favorite MOOC starts monetizing their platform?