The other major problem the MOOCs haven’t solved is assessment. They work very well for subjects like maths, which have objectively right and wrong answers, and can therefore be pretty easily marked by computers. It remains to be seen whether the model can be extended to softer subject areas, like, say, politics, philosophy or the social sciences. The problems with assessment point to a larger problem: accreditation. A university education has never just been about acquiring knowledge. It’s about being able to prove it. Employers look to the type of degree, the reputation of the institution that issued it and the marks a student received as shorthand for that student’s ability. The MOOCs need to figure out how to ascertain that the work they’re marking was done by the student whose name is on the test.