Education is over-bundled. Universities are bundling value propositions such as knowledge, credentials, networking, fun, and discovery to students. Resulting in many students paying for stuff they don’t want. The Great Unbundling – Popping bundles, not bubbles by University Ventures articulates this problem pretty well. My favorite segment is:
“Bundling has been the primary way universities have managed to avoid the cost/benefit analyses consumers make for virtually every other purchase decision. Just as it has for music, unbundling would dramatically reduce per student revenue in higher education. In microeconomic terms, bundling captures surplus for producers. Unbundling moves some of that producer surplus to consumers and may create new consumer surplus.”
Never before has there been such widespread availability of educational content. It’s never been so cheap or easy to learn. I found this meme pretty funny and pretty true:
However, until employers start viewing alternative sources of education and credentialing as viable, much of the innovation happening in the industry will have little impact. For that reason, I think credentialing will be the greatest challenge. There’s lot being done with credentialing and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.