I’ve long argued that educational institutions could benefit from giving away a first course free. The loss is small, how much does it cost to add each new student to a class you already have to teach? The gain potentially big, many (perhaps, I’d love to see figures, most) people will go on to do a full degree or diploma, even if they don’t they will likely speak favourably about the institution to their contacts and most new students are drawn to their place of study by word of mouth.

Now some big names have got the idea: