In sociology there is a phenomenon called the Matthew Effect which derives from the following passage in the Gospel of Matthew: "For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away." I believe that the growth of free educational resources online will create an educational version of the Matthew Effect.
Until very recently in order to get a college education you needed to go to college. And, in order to network you needed to go to college. For students who could afford it this meant going to a top of the line university. Of course, the ability to fund these top of the line education already created a gap between students who could pay for a premium education and those who had to settle for what they could afford. But, what will happen in a world where you can attain the knowledge and networking benefits of college for free with the use of online resource such as iTunesU, Open Culture, MIT Opencourses, and LinkedIn?