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The global, cross-sector conference and exhibition on
technology supported learning and training

Berlin, December 2 - 4, 2020

Panel Session HIG160

University Should Be Just for the Elite!

Could it be argued that by far the majority of people who go to university do so for these three reasons; for status, to get a job, and to have some fun. While it could also be argued that it is not the responsibility of the state to subsidise those who wish to improve their status and have fun, perhaps it is their responsibility to help its citizens become productive and self-sufficient. But do we really need universities to do that?

We, in online learning, know that it can be done in other more cost effective ways. It could be argued that people learn more efficiently at work. Combining work with study and training both online and on the job may well be a better way to make them productive and self-sufficient. So why do we need higher education?

This Panel will provide those responsible for the provision of education and training at all levels, from national policy development to teaching professionals, with ideas on how higher and further education might be better structured in the future.

Perhaps we should return to a better version of the older model, where universities were for the elite, except now for the brilliant rather than the rich. The rest of us may need to accept that we are better suited to the needs of the everyday workplace and appreciate the wondrous and useful things and ideas that the “eggheads” produce for us.

Five highly experienced learning professionals will discuss the above proposition. The speakers supporting the motion will describe how learning technologies can provide cheaper and more effective training and education services outside the higher education system. The speakers supporting the motion will argue that learning technologies can be used to address the deficiencies within the current system.


OEB speaker Brian Mulligan

Brian Mulligan

Institute of Technology Sligo, Ireland

OEB speaker Donald Clark

Donald Clark

Plan B Learning, UK

OEB speaker Jane Bozarth

Jane Bozarth

The eLearning Guild, USA

OEB speaker Paul Bacsich

Paul Bacsich

Matic Media Ltd, UK