The MOOC market (Massive Open Online Courses) has exploded. This month Coursera landed another $20M in funding, bringing their total investment to $63M (even more than edX‘s original $60M funding by MIT and Harvard).
Why all the investment? Because this market opportunity is massive and building these online courses is expensive.
There are more than 2 billion potential learners around the world today, and more than 70% of these are unable to afford a college degree. And today a college degree is more important than ever: McKinsey believes college-educated workers will have a three-fold advantage in salaries and opportunities by 2020.
Adding to this hot market for college, there are hundreds of millions of post-secondary students and professionals who will flock to branded degree courses in a huge way. As the MOOC certification market matures these individuals will find online education more and more valuable every quarter (note below that LinkedIn is helping with this process).
While many people have commented on the low completion rates for MOOCs and even Sebastian Thrun of Udacity is unhappy with his courses’s impact, this space is poised to grow very rapidly.