There were plenty of newsworthy events in 2013, from acquisitions (Elsevier acquired Knovel, Swets acquired JSTOR ebooks), to ebooks (Ingram added an ebook lending model to MyiLibrary, Apple was tried for ebook price fixing), to MOOCs (institutions such as edX and Coursera offered topics including 21st Century American Foreign Policy, Introduction to Computer Science, and Embedded Systems: Shape the World). Tablet computers and apps gained in popularity, while previously favored devices such as BlackBerry found their customer bases declining.
So what’s likely to make headlines in 2014? Industry professionals John Blossom, Michael Cairns, Roy Kaufman, and Pat Sabosik offer their insights about the cloud, massive open online courses (MOOCs), Big Data, open access (OA), and the Internet of Things:
- Blossom predicts that Microsoft’s 2013 missteps will offer opportunities for Google and Apple.
- MOOCs may lead to the end of the traditional school year calendar, according to Cairns.
- Kaufman sees more OA group efforts such as CHORUS and SHARE in the coming year.
- Sabosik cites Business Insider’s prediction that 100 million wearable devices will be available in 2014.
Here is a sample from my submission:
The evolution of MOOCs will also become entwined with some broader issues of higher education effectiveness, cost, and access. More universities will see MOOCs as a means of managing some or all of these issues at a local level, whether they’re looking to reduce tuition (and/or operating expenses), provide more course offerings, or expand beyond their traditional market or catchment area. Experimentation will also include local testing of MOOCs used in combination with small in-class/in-person structures: This will provide more immediate social interactions and communication with colleagues while, at the same time, capitalizing on the “star professor” and the wide exposure to other student backgrounds that MOOCs can provide.