Online Teacher makes $8 million a year

zzzAnd gets the girl, too. A geek’s dream is happening to an online educator Cha Kil-yong in Korea. As outlined in the Washington Post. His success is due partly to the mania for education that is part of Korean culture. He makes online videos, similar to that of Khan Academy, for examination prep school. His online courses are only a small fraction of what a flesh-and-blood instructor costs, but he is so popular that his videos bring in enough for him to make that astounding salary.

Over here in Japan we have a similar teacher, one I call the “Blackboard ninja” who goes on TV and shows some simple lessons and his animated way to explain complex concepts with a piece of chalk. Yet here, it is not packaged into an online course. A real indication of the state of tech in education in Japan.

The idea that a small team of developers can create a set of materials that can be sold in MOOC-like quantities to thousands, and make millions is a trend to watch. There will be much more of it. If I were a young educator working part time at 3 or 4 universities, scrambling for that full-time tenured position, I would highly consider moving into this direction. The trick is to find the right team members, the guy in front of the camera is only one part of the operation. Production, writing, web authoring, publicity, sales and support are all necessary components. We are seeing the last days of the lone teacher. Better get used to collaboration. If you do it right, you can make a mint.


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