Wednesday, September 30, 2009

1.4: Is this the future?

I received an odd RSS feed relaring to existing Beyond Current Horizons essays, once of whcih I hadn't blogged on before (see previous posts concerning these). "The digital landscape and new education providers" considers how digital technologies have lowered the barriers of entry to higher education and how many large corporates are making the most of the opportunity. The growth of home-schooling, blended learning and online question-and-answer sites is discussed, as are trends in ebooks, learning in virtual worlds and assessment. Inspiring stuff... if these trends continue, the future of education will be very different!

The article addresses the arguments of openness, quality, IP and the importance of revenue streams. Most interesting to me, though, was the very interesting section on "Lifelong learning and the learning society", which seems to emphasise training and workplace skills over classic liberal education. There are serious costs here; an industrially-based and pragmatic education is not the same thing as an emancipating, self-actualising one. "The Future" section (Part Three) ends with an excellent quote:

...we all value open-ness, participation, communication and collaboration, and that we value professional expertise and quality assurance. We value individuals and their free pursuit of ideas and interests; we value communities and the compromise that they necessarily entail. We value knowledge and innovation; we value health, the body and genuine sustainability. We value our economy and the role for education policy in ensuring a good fit between what is learnt at all stages of life, and what is needed to sustain a healthy economy run by competent, confident, adaptive people. We value the classics, the arts, and learning for the sake of personal development and wellbeing. We value diversity and flexibility; we value cohesion and manageability. We work together, with hope, towards a future of physical and social technologies that reflect these values.

Yep, I'm into that.

1 comment:

karim said...

An insightfull post. Will definitely help.

Thanks,
Karim - Positive thinking