Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

Education, says Marc Prensky, can't be fixed. "It no longer meets our needs, nor will it ever meet them again." It needs to be replaced, he says. But with what? Something that not only responds to technological change but also the sea change in what we believe and how we relate to each other in the world. And the changes we are seeing now make the 1960s look like a minor blip. So we need what he calls 'post-education'. A lot of what Prensky proposes accords with my own thinking. You have to read about half way through this longish article to get to it (but it's worth the read):

"The old ends (of 20cE) are to improve individuals intellectually — so that they can, ideally, go off later and improve the world. (But we never check if they do.) The new ends of Post-Education are to improve the world immediately, through teams of kids’ accomplishing real-world projects with Measurable Positive Impact, and for those who do to get better and better at it through constant practice and improvement." That's not bad, but I would draw an important distinction between enabling them to change the world rather than forcing them change it. That's why we need (what he calls) the key future elements of empowerment, that is: new beliefs, accomplishment, uniqueness and symbiosis (contrast with my key elements of autonomy, diversity, openness and interactivity). Image: UMSU.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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Last Updated: Sept 27, 2020 1:57 p.m.