Professor Jim Wilson believes there will be a loss of "critical mass" and new competition between the two centres, which could impair professional expertise and lead to staff cuts.
His discomfiting analysis comes at a time when higher education sees opporunities for greater post-McCrone involvement in continuing professional development.
Professor Wilson's comments are contained in a booklet, Serving Scotland's Teachers, which looks at Northern College's role in CPD since 1991. He admits it has failed to exploit the value of research in supporting teachers to cope with innovation, the integration of information technology into teaching and learning, and policies such as social inclusion.
CPD feature, ScotlandPlus 6-9