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What is a university? There's a legal answer to that question, of course, as well as historical, philosophical, instructional, and civic. And strictly by some of these definitions, General Assembly doesn't qualify as a university. There are no degrees awarded. There is no .edu Web domain. There is no football team.

And yet the New York City-based organization has a campus. It offers classes in engineering and entrepreneurship. It even offers certification. And by some accounts at least, what General Assembly offers the New York City community (and soon London, too) is very possibly the future of higher education. At the very least, it could be the future of more informal, lifelong learning.

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Audrey Watters


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