The National Inflation Association has released their top 10 predictions for 2011. Second from the top is the expectation that traditional colleges will begin shutting down primarily due to (1) increasing debt from construction projects, and (2) tuition costs that continue surging upwards despite the recession.
NIA expects to see a new trend of Americans seeking to become educated cheaply over the Internet. There will be a huge drop off in demand for traditional college degrees. NIA expects to see many colleges default on their debts in 2011. These colleges will be forced to either downsize and educate students more cost effectively or close their doors for good.
As students continue moving away from the traditional classroom, the cost of online learning will drop and quality will improve. Colleges without distance programs will have incentive to start their own. Rising fuel prices will also increase the attractiveness of learning from home. This is good news for distance learners.