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Micro College

This case explores the possibility of developing a new kind of college, the “Microcollege.”    This idea is born of the book by David Staley (2019) titled Alternative Universities: Speculative Design for Innovation in Higher Education, Johns Hopkins Press[1].  Staley describes the Microcollege as one that consists, ideally, of one professor and twenty students.  The curriculum and pedagogical philosophy of each Microcollege is unique as the professor who leads it: an architect, a poet, an entrepreneur.  Faculty leaders establish their Microcolleges in a range of settings: urban, rural, office parks, cultural institutions.  Each specific location helps to shape the underlying pedagogical and research philosophy.


A prospectus for this college was developed to bring the idea “down to earth.”  It is about a “start-up” how can we get this started, what is a minimum viable product, and how small (in terms of students—twenty students is seen as ideal) can this be? Is it feasible and sustainable?


Simply put--- you are building a college from scratch.  How small can it be, and can it be done, and will anyone care given your value proposition?


There are three documents in this case: the case and prospectus, teaching notes, and an EXCEL spreadsheet to explore the financial modeling of the Microcollege.

Micro College

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