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Gates on Online Education: “It Will Be Better than Any Single University.”

Bill Gates was a guest speaker at the Techonomy conference in Lake Tahoe, CA and it seems the man is not too old the predict the future. As you can remember, he was the person who back in 2005 said that high schools in America are obsolete.

Then everyone, included the media started writing, commenting, and pushing for a reform in the American education which has been implemented according to each political party in the government. Even though some are on the attack of the organization Gates funds, the former Microsoft CEO speaks again and people pay attention. He is not far from reality, in a few years more you'll be able to find the best lectures in the world for free. It is already happening in large and prestigious universities.

Read the analysis MS Siegler published on TechCrunch:

    {Gates] believes that no matter how you came about your knowledge, you should get credit for it. Whether it’s an MIT degree or if you got everything you know from lectures on the web, there needs to be a way to highlight that.

    He made sure to say that educational institutions are still vital for children, K-12. He spoke glowingly about charter schools, where kids can spend up to 80% of their time deeply engaged with learning.

    But college needs to be less “place-based,” according to Gates. Well, except for the parties, he joked.

    But his overall point is that it’s just too expensive and too hard to get these upper-level educations. And soon place-based college educations will be five times less important than they are today.

    One particular problem with the education system according to Gates is textbooks. Even in grade schools, they can be 300 pages for a book about math. "They’re giant, intimidating books," he said. "I look at them and think: what on Earth is in there?"

    According to Gates, our text books are three times longer than the equivalents in Asia. And yet they’re beating us in many ways with education. The problem is that these things are built by committee, and more things are simply added on top of what’s already in there.

    Gates said that technology is the only way to bring education back under control and expand it.

We are not fond of the charter schools as Gates is, but he has a point when he speaks of education on the Web. People at the Reform Symposium could not conclude favorably about online education. The criteria were divided.

Let's wait to see who was wrong into 5 more years.

Follow Milton Ramirez on Twitter.

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