POSSIBLY MAYBE: The beginning and end of every year sees heaps of trends and predictions. Contact North research associate Tony Bates lists some of the factors associated with good forecasting from clairvoyant data wiz Nate Silver--and why few of them exist when it comes to online learning. "We have very little data on what is actually happening in online learning, and over-reporting in some areas (e.g. MOOCs) and under-reporting in others (for-credit programs)." Still, he concedes that predictions are still valuable--not for the sake of accuracy but so that "at least we can be prepared."