Facebook and Google could be allowed to award university degrees

The United Kingdom wants Facebook and Google to award to university students. This was revealed under a proposal which seeks changes to the UK’s university education system. According to the proposal, companies such as Google and Facebook could be allowed to set up their own academic institutions in the country capable of awarding degrees.

The proposal paper which has been posted online, Success As A Knowledge Economy, is aimed at reforming further education in the UK, which would also include a raise in the current $13,000 tuition fees in line with inflation from next year.

The paper proposes drastic reforms to the current educational setup in United Kingdom universities. The paper says the government should encourage the setting up of ‘challenger institutions’ (ie. education centers that don’t fall within the well-established norms). This, it says will help companies ensure they have suitably skilled workers, as well as providing people with an education.

The report says:

There is no compelling reason for incumbents to be protected from high quality competition. We want a globally competitive market that supports diversity, where anyone who demonstrates they have the potential to offer excellent teaching and clears our high quality bar can compete on a level playing field. If we place too much emphasis on whether a provider has a long established track record, this by definition will favour incumbents, and risks shutting out high quality and credible new institutions.

However as of yet both Facebook and Google have not shown any interest in pursuing academics. Microsoft has been awarding certification but it is not linked to any university or country.