Florida’s ‘Online U’ Could Be Nations First Online Public University

There are currently discussions underway concerning a new online university based in Florida that might be opened to the public, under the name “Online U”, and if all goes well, this institution will be added to the 12 universities that have already been established in the area. With universities such as MIT and Harvard already opening up their courses to online students, the stigma associated with online qualifications is set to be overturned. Institutions such as this are coming as a breath of fresh air due to the rising need of education within all professional fields, as well as the costs associated with the construction of building land-based institutions to accommodate all those that would like to further their prospects through higher education. While the decision to establish “Online U” has not yet been finalized, professionals have been brought together to begin discussing how to turn this concept into a reality.

The Parthenon Group Of Boston

The Parthenon Group Of Boston has been brought together this month to begin discussions on how to go about establishing the online university, and some are saying that it might be a good idea to collaborate with institutions such as the University of South Florida, Florida State University and University Of Florida so that they can contribute some of their courses to this venture. The supporters of the online educational world are considering this move to be groundbreaking, in terms of education.

Shaping The Future Of Education

According to Professor Matt Hintze of the University of Florida, there has not been a change such as this in education “since the invention of the printing press.” Mr. Hintze is one of the members of the board that is currently discussing the way forward with regards to the online university.

What The Critics Have To Say

While there are many that are very excited about this prospective new venture, others still have lukewarm feelings about it, including the University Of South Florida professor Sherman Dorn, who believes that the university’s current online resources are “excellent” and he feels that they shouldn’t be ignored. He doesn’t believe that an online institution will have the same feel as a land-based establishment, especially in terms of “community identity”. According to a census conducted on the matter, which included over 4,500 lecturers, more than half felt “more fear than excitement” at the prospect of online learning. Others feel that the outcomes might be “inferior” and therefore the same qualifications will not equate, in terms of standards, to a qualification obtained from a land-based institution.

Embracing The Future Of Education

While there might be mixed feelings between faculty members, it seems clear that something needs to be done about the growing need for higher education and many feel that online opportunities will open the doors for those who would not have otherwise been able to enter university. It remains to be seen how this new “Online U” will affect the way that people think about education, as well as the opportunities that will be made available to the public through the institution, but it appears as if it is all steam ahead.