“We want to become the Tesla of online education. Before, drivers thought that gas-powered cars were better than electric cars. Now they see that electric cars provide excellent service. It’s the same with distance learning.” explains Benoît Arnaud, Associate Dean and SVP of the newly formed EDHEC Online division.
EDHEC is not the only school eyeing this market. HEC introduced its first fully online degree in March 2017 and other renowned business schools are also creating online classes. By 2025, EDHEC plans to graduate 1,000 distance-learning students per year for a total of €126 million, or 10% of its turnover. In time, the school hopes to reach 20%.
EDHEC already has 15 years of e-learning experience under its belt, thanks to its blended learning PhD, program manager degree and 100% online BBA track. The school already has a studio and will soon recruit a new team of teaching and IT development experts to digitalize all its offerings in the next five years. The staff will also include dedicated coaches who will work with groups of five students both individually and collectively.
Whereas HEC has opted to house its online degree classes on Coursera, EDHEC Online will be available on a proprietary platform, which will charge similar rates to other pre-existing platforms. It will gain visibility by producing certain content with prestigious programs in France and abroad, such as Berkeley Online. EDHEC will also offer several highly specialized finance courses on Coursera. Additionally, EDHEC has signed agreements with the mobile-learning leader Teach on Mars and the UEA, the French association for companies that employ people with disabilities, in order to make its offerings available to everyone.
Yet nothing comes for free. After committing to not raising tuition for three years in response to the outcry produced by the last big hike, EDHEC will have to increase tuition again to cover the cost of these online initiatives. However, the school says the bump will remain within “the limits of inflation.”
Cécile Peltier, Translated by Nina Fink | Publié le