On US Air earlier this month, I ran across a brief article in the in-flight magazine that referenced this study, which finds a positive correlation between physical proximity of research co-authors and citations to their work. (I'm SURE there is a more graceful and scientific way to put this.) The news-you-can-use the magazine was inferring from this was that in-person cooperation resulted in a better product than something created via long-distance collaboration.
I have no idea how true this might be but I did keep thinking of it on my travels, where I kept running into MLS students in distance education programs, where the only meetings between faculty and students, or students and each other, were via the web. I have no experience with such programs and I'm wondering what you all think. Are they as good, better, or just less expensive and more convenient than bricks-and-mortar schools? Feel free to opine about the general usefulness of library education generally, but be warned that any whining about how "it's just a union card" might get you mocked.