The shift to on-line education can happen gradually and easily

I left the following comment on Bryan Caplan’s blog post:

You don’t need to overturn all convention.  The top schools could shift at the margin, as they have many times in the past, and suddenly the conformist thing to do is to have ?? percent of your classes be on-line, and so on.  In virtually any other context you would see the flexibility of the market here!  No major credentials need to collapse, if it turns out that cannot happen easily.

This is a phantom issue, raised by many people but not thought through deeply enough.  Markets convexify (sometimes).

It is fine to argue “on-line education is not in fact more efficient.”  It is much harder to argue “if it is efficient, conformity pressures will keep it out of the market.”  Don’t confuse the former case with the latter.


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