The DIY MBA is here, now who is going to award the degree?

It seems the future is already here with students now in a position to assemble a degree syllabus out of free MOOC courses offered by higher education institutions. This article An MBA For Under A Grand? Seriously! describes one such student who has taken a very proactive approach and is completing an MBA’s worth of studying over 2-3 years at little or no cost.

The questions raised by this new approach to higher education are many, but for those seeking to use the end product of education (certification and grade) in recruitment, questions of particular relevance are:

  • Will employers recognise this study without a degree certificate from a recognised University?
  • How does an employer or institution validate that such courses have been completed and at what level of performance.
  • Are there education institutions willing to recognise the completion of such open courses from a variety of providers in the awarding of a conventional degree?

It seems there is an opportunity for a recognised university with a solid reputation to take on a role of quality assurance for open courses and award equivalent credits and even degrees where appropriate. Plus this is a service which could be offered at a cost which the student is likely to be happy to pay.  Its going to be interesting to see who is first to step up to the plate…