By now, popular sentiment is that MOOCs—massive online open courses—are the Napster of higher education. They’re disrupting the industry in a way that makes everything uncertain, except that the education system as we know it will be a thing of the past, Mother Board reports. The MOOC trend isn’t slowing down—millions of people are now taking classes online, and more and more university system are embracing the new format and incorporating it into their curriculum. Meanwhile, professors are realizing they’re getting the short end of the MOOC stick. They envision a doomsday scenario in which the professoriate is passed over for an automated, convenient and free virtual learning industry. If their lesson plans, reading materials, videos and quizzes are freely available to anyone with a wi-fi connection, will it render the professor useless? …  “If we lose the battle over intellectual property, it’s over,” former American Association of University Professors president Cary Nelson said at the group’s annual conference this week. “Being a professor will no longer be a professional career or a professional identity.” Until now, there wasn’t much reason to question a professor’s right to own the courses he or she creates.

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