Megatrends in e-learning provision

by | Feb 18, 2008 | Articles

How can large scale e-learning initiatives become sustainable and cost effective?

This is the question that has been considered by the  Megatrends in e-learning project  for the past 2 years as they have considered what has worked and what hasn’t in the provision of large scale regional or national projects across Europe. Projects included Distance education institutions, Universities colleges and consortia and corporate education providers.

This website contains the project’s feedback in 3 main papers:

  • Megaproviders of e-learning in Europe
  • e-learning initiatives that did not reach targetted goals
  • Megatrend recommendations- analysis of the first 2 papers that gave rise to 34 recommendations for long term and sustainable success.

The analysis of failed implementations is a rarity – the project looks at  examples which represented investments of over 150m euros but all of which failed. The following are 7 of the 34 recommendations resulting from their study in failed implementations that highlight the need for an effective  combination of common sense and business sense!

  1. Realize that hard-nosed market research is essential for the success of any e-learning
  2. Plan carefully for and control carefully the revenue and expenses. Seeding funding
    dries up quickly
  3. Choice of courses and their accreditation is crucial
  4. Define precisely the relationships of your initiative to existing providers and define
    precisely the institutional model you will adopt
  5. Plan carefully to manage both educational and business activities
  6. Avoid top-down political and boardroom initiatives
  7. Avoid consortia of institutions that compete with each other and the consortium.


The Megatrends in e-learning project part of the Leonado da Vinci programme. It ran from October 05 to Sept 07 and was co-ordinated out of Norway by the Norsk Kunnskaps-Institutt and supported by partners across Europe.

This article was originally created by the Work based e-learning project at e-skills UK and is reproduced with kind permission.

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