The leadership crisis that rent the University of Virginia last month arose partly out of fear that other elite schools were moving into the vanguard of a coming digital revolution, and that U-Va. stood to be left behind, the Washington Post reports. That argument, advanced by the leader of the university governing board, turned out to be based on a faulty premise. Almost no one on campus knew at the time the breadth of the collective investment that U-Va. was already making in online education. On Tuesday, the investment will yield a major payoff. The university is joining a prestigious online consortium led by two Stanford University professors. With one stroke, the Virginia public flagship heads toward the front of a potentially transformative movement to online learning on a global scale. The university’s participation in Coursera, an initiative to offer free online courses to the masses, answers a criticism that loomed large in the recent power struggle in Charlottesville that began with the abrupt resignation of President Teresa Sullivan and ended with her reinstatement…

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