In this epsiode, Susan and Dan reflect on the recent online conference on The Future of Education.
Susan and Dan review the Future of Education online conference, June 4-8, organized by George Siemens and hosted by the University of Manitoba’s Learning Technologies Centre. The conference site and information can be found here.
It’s never too late to benefit since the discussions and presentations are archived!
As Dan and Susan discuss they key points they got from the conference, keep in mind that they participated in distinctly different ways. Susan attended the live sessions, and Dan followed the asynchronous discussions.
Where do you think education will be 10 years from now? Most active discussion. Emerging theme on home schooling. This became an international issue. Another point was visible community learning, having one place for learning in a community. In general, moving education away from formalized structure into less formal means.
Susan reflected on a point she hadn’t thought about before, brought out in the keynote by Sugata Mitra. It’s the people without money and resources that need the technology, not those of us who have the money and the technology. He gave several examples she enjoyed (especially as an ESL teacher).
Dan recommends we follow this link to read more about a program in Bangalore he read about in the discussions. The term was “slow learning.”
Virginia Yonkers’ good question: How can we prepare students without using technology how to live in a technological world?
Susan also attended a session by Cheri Toledo and her colleagues on preparing future teachers to use technology. How do we teach students to use technology and then what do we do to support them once they graduate? Several different models were shared. Key points: focus more on pedagogy and move away from teacher-centered practice.
Much discussion about technology in emerging or developing countries and what pedagogical models might work.
Future of education map by Knowledge Works foundation. What are the forces that will affect the future of education? This led to quite a discussion about the “end of cyberspace” The physical and emotional component of learning will not be artificially separated between the physical and virtual worlds.
That supports the idea of the personal side of learning, which was another key theme.
Jay Cross raised the question of why we’re continuing to do more research and not just acting (as business does). Also, preparation of students and the skills needed in the workplace.
The cross-continental discussions and clarification of vocabulary were interesting reads.
Interesting parallel between education in the web 2.0 world and the medieval world. Blogs are like common places (not like commons). Susan’s observations of what’s happening in online learning supports the idea of students seeking out teachers and not just going to a classroom.
Susan learned the phrase “the third place” and hopes listeners will come back to share their ideas about the future of education.
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