“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” -Mark Twain
Our systems of education, especially in India, are still outdated and unproductive. Since meaningful learning is key to any development, it definitely needs more attention. We will owe a big thank you to technology for transforming the way kids of the next generation are educated.
Here are five major shifts I visualize taking place in the future:
1. Focus on Creativity and Problem-solving: The 21st century is being called the Conceptual Age as the focus is on being creative and innovative. We no longer need to memorize what Mr X did in 1920 or what city is the capital of Country Y. You can easily get this information through a web search engine. Anything that you can readily find out from the Internet does not really need to be memorized by rote. The focus has to be and will be on creativity and problem-solving.
2. Online Learning: We can already see this paradigm shift in action. Soon there won’t be the need to go to a physical school and be taught by the teacher there. It may take fifty more years, but it will happen for sure.
3. Personalized/Customized Learning: Unlike the current system where everyone is expected to learn the same things, future curricula would be based on the individual student’s cognitive mapping, strengths and interests. People will no longer need to waste time on learning things which aren’t useful or of interest to them.
4. Fewer Years of Formal Schooling: People will not be required to spend sixteen to twenty years on formal education in the future. This will be considered too much time to spend on just learning. Future generations will not only have to learn quicker but will be expected to focus on a few areas so as to quickly apply their learning to a job or some problem of interest.
5. Cheaper Education and Teaching by the Best: Once the requirement for physical schools and teachers is reduced and there is more demand for e-learning, costs will come down automatically. More importantly, people will learn online from the best of the best. Coursera, Khan Academy, etc. are a few examples of learning providers already taking us in this direction.
The future of education is very exciting because the focus will be on real and meaningful learning.