What’s next for online education? — from educationalist.substack.com by Alexandra Mihai


An ecosystem not a dichotomy
As you’re hopefully already getting from my thoughts so far, I personally see our options for quality education in the future more like an ecosystem and not a series of mutually exclusive paths. It’s time to discard- or at least question-the “online vs. in person” dichotomy, almost always unfavourable to online education. It’s time to think in a more nuanced way about this. And, yes, you’ve guessed, more nuanced is always more difficult. Seeing the shades of grey requires a critical lens that we don’t need to see black and white.

The extent to which online education will be used in the future does not depend only on people (micro level), it depends on institutions (meso level) and policies (macro level).

The learning ecosystem, in my view:

  • includes various modalities used in a complementary way and as a continuum;
  • serves a multitude of audiences, at different stages of learning, with different aims and degrees of engagement;
  • requires comprehensive and interconnected support structures at institutional level, for students and faculty.