Sunday, 16 November 2008

Newer models of Democratising Education

India has a problem-not enough people are getting the skills that allow them to learn, do more, and be more employable. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that most of the educational world as we know it is structured as a top down process, where the model is that the "teachers" push "learning" to students in traditional contexts, such as the classrooms.

However, , there are two challenges- teaching , even 50 at a time, cannot solve problems that have learning deficits that run into millions of people- so this is not scalable? The second challenge is that not all teachers are created equal, and the best teachers have an ability to get learning across much better than average teachers- so the challenge is that our "rock star" teachers must be able to reach the widest audience, and impart learning.

So how do we go about solving this? I think the answer lies in giving more power to the young, and in democratising education, because they will naturally leverage technology, and are already leading the behaviour change that is being driven by that technology permeation.

I lead an organisation that imparts employability skills, thro the medium of e-learning, to college students and graduates that are looking for a job or have already found one. There is an example that illustrate the point above , which relates to the usage of social networks in their urge to beat the system- we track user behaviour not just in our platforms, but also in the social networks- and their ability to come up with solutions to beat the system are uncanny-we have an entire group that is dedicated to keeping our tabs on how they leverage social networks and other web2.0 mechanisms to spread their understanding of how to beat the assessment systems.

Finally looking outside, there are some examples that have done a brilliant job of trying to solve the problem- one example is the Korean company "Megastudy" that makes rock-stars out of their best tutors, who are monetised on their popularity with the online audience.


Anonymous said...

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And according to this article, I totally agree with your opinion, but only this time! :)

Anonymous said...

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