The Guardian homeBy David NewtonDemand for online higher education is at record levels – yet the model remains a mystery for many. For David Newton, the only mystery is why everyone thinks it's so unusual. My name is David Newton, professor of business studies. I'm an online higher education tutor. Some of you may read that last sentence as a confession, rather than a simple statement of fact. Why? In my view, it is because – despite its growing popularity and valuable role in the future of higher education – online learning is still a mystery to many in academia, and viewed with prejudice by some. Take me, for example. People assume I'm some new breed of academic. I'm not. I am currently a tutor and programme director for undergraduate and MBA business degrees with a respected online learning provider. But my background is no different from any other university professor. I've worked in numerous UK and overseas universities, researched and published widely, and was dean of business and vice-principal at the Royal Agricultural College, where I still hold a visiting professorship in strategic management. Read more...