A few highlights on this infographic illustrating one of the most fundamental shifts happening in education today.  just as remote commuting is exploding, the wave has moved upsream into the younger strata of society with e-learning.

  • 1971 enrollment at the Open University: 25,000 students.  Today it is the largest UK university with 250,000 students.
  • Online education industry: $34 billion
  • By 2019, 50% of all classes taught will be delivered online and many for free
  • Half of online student are 26 years old or more
  • higher education is, reportedly, no longer only for the elite. Anyone with an internet connection can educate themselves

On the latter point, one might wonder about the headache recruiters are bound to have.  Going from a model where:

  1. an institution name or even just the name of a degree already, gives out clues about the qualifications of an applicant
  2. to one where many of the applicants are self-taught online and may have a lot more practical experience available for the enterprise to tap into.

Do you think this is something likely to happen?

Companies are already using what some might call “strange” recruiting methods.  Google receives 1 million resumes every year and – if they are serious about hiring only the very best – cannot possibly only rely on pieces of paper that after looking at 10, all look the same.  Google now use questions that some call crazy or absurd; maybe or maybe not.  Either way, these are now as famous as feared by applicants; “A man pushed his car to the hotel and lost all of his fortune.  What happened?”, “How much would you charge for cleaning all the windows in the city of Seattle?”, “How many ping-pong balls could you fit in the Mediterranean sea?”…

William Poundstone, author of “Are you smart enough to work for Google?”, recently told the times that: “Studies show that traditional interviews don’t reveal enough, they throw these eccentric questions out to gauge how creative, open and flexible applicants are”.  This type of interviewing is no longer exclusive to the geeks of Silicone Valley; it has spread like wild fire to all industries.




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