Outsourcing Public Higher Ed in California

A plan in California to require public colleges to award credit for certain online courses offered by other institutions and providers has attracted considerable interest and considerable faculty scrutiny.

California lawmakers detailed a plan Wednesday to require the state’s 145 public colleges and universities to grant credit for low-cost online courses offered by outside groups, including classes offered by for-profit companies. The bill, backed by the powerful leader of the state’s Senate, would force all the state’s colleges – from community colleges to the University of California at Berkeley – to reduce overcrowding by allowing students to enroll in dozens of outsourced classes. The idea immediately captured attention not just among educators, but among pundits and politicians - and not just in California.

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