I feel like a broken record or maybe an animated gif. Maybe the MOOC cheerleading will settle down, I think--and then Thomas Friedman. You know--the MOOC cheerleading piece that Historiann rightly took down in her post yesterday.
I've exhausted just about all the reasons I can think of--and Jonathan Rees has (more elegantly) covered the rest--but here is another one:
What about employers? There's a compelling little graphic over at CHE titled "Employers Prefer All Types of Colleges--Except Online." Public flagships rate first. Online universities rank dead last. Heck, they aren't even in the same quadrant.
Now, MOOCs are not the University of Rising Mythical Bird or other for-profits, but except in technical fields, where the appeal of having computer geniuses rise through the MOOC ranks based on sheer talent makes some sense, are employers likely to hire MOOC-certified people who have badges instead of degrees? In this job market?
Is Stanford going to hire its Coursera grads to work at the university in the B.A.-level jobs it has open?
If you want to see any of those posts, here are some:
On MOOCs as "in-person lecture to 35 students BAD, video lecture to 14,000 students GOOD"
On MOOCs as a mechanism to sell textbooks:
On MOOCs as creating a two-tier educational system, or Eloi and Morlocks:
Would little Charles and Alexandra Wealthyname be headed for a MOOC, or is that just for the rest of us?
http://notofgeneralinterest.blogspot.com/2012/05/come-revolution-university-could.html (With a bonus appearance starring Thomas Friedman's special brand of cheerleading).
On MOOCs, credit, and high-status brand dilution:
On professors as glorified tutors--"handmaidens to greatness"--in the MOOC model:
http://notofgeneralinterest.blogspot.com/2012/05/more-questions-on-moocs.html (This one features Head MOOC Cheerleader David Brooks. He and Friedman ought to form a double act and take it on the road.)
On MOOC economics, or what will happen when MOOCs replace the gen ed courses that pay for all those fancy lab courses:
And one from 2011, touchingly (it seems now) called "Ever hear of a MOOC?"