What is school for when both non-students and students have access to the same information? If you can access the information anywhere, then the value is not longer in that scarcity. Maybe it is about enrollment– students feel enrolled because they are paying for tuition. Seth Godin thinks that it is about obedience and conformity. Which I think is true. Which leads me to the question that I’m really asking, “what are students hoping to receive from a higher education?”
I think that it is maybe a couple of things: connections, structure and reassurance.
- Connections: Being in a learning community connects you with people who do what you do, which serves a students in the present and in the future.
- Structure: School offers a structure and routine to learning that is difficult to achieve when learning independently.
- Reassurance: And lastly, higher education offers a kind of reassurance. It confirms that we are on the right path. It says, “if you can get a degree– you can do anything.”