Tech is not the first thing to improve Tech Education

Automation has made many jobs obsolete from entire industries in the United States –and the rate of job loss is only increasing. People are working harder for fewer wages. Our education is stagnating for centuries.

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Alibaba’s CEO Jack Ma argues that if we keep on continuing to train students to compete with machines then we are definitely up for disastrous outcomes. Employers and educators should emphasize on preparing the children for the new world of work where automation will dominate.

It should come naturally that technology will decide the way we educate our citizens. It has not only disrupted the industries, but gave it an entirely new makeover. With the advances in software companies like Facebook, Google, Amazon, Lyft, and others industries like retail, manufacturing, transportation, media, and even hospitality are being reshaped. While the internet may have put the entire world’s knowledge into our pockets, it has failed to significantly improve the education sector.

AltSchool, backed by Mark Zuckerberg, uses a personalized learning platform, but even they have not produced improved results so far. Parents say that they have to supplement their children’s education with tutoring to teach them what schools are not teaching.

Expectations were high with the release of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) that they will entirely change the landscape of education arena with accessible education at fingertips. But the outcomes were disappointing as soon as we realized that MOOCs are not the magic we were waiting for. Even the vice president of Udacity vouches that MOOCs are dead.

Providing tablets to students is not going to help in the current educational crisis. If humans would follow rules and behave rationally, only then MOOCs could be a success. The problem is we don’t behave that way. Students may not learn as efficiently when sitting alone in front of a computer than amongst peers. Research shows that students tend to learn better when within a community of learners.

Maybe technology may not be the source of disruption for education. The reason is that education is different from other industries; it is about working with people.

A new form of education has emerged in which students consume knowledge and content on their own while the interactions are used for discussions and interactive problem solving. In this flipped classroom system, teachers are not the gateway between students and education but work as facilitators of education. Finland, known as having the best school system, has already adapted these flipped classrooms. In the place of listening to lectures passively, students will work in group projects, and develop their soft and problem solving skills.

In the new world, problem solving is the must have skill. Google also reported that the top performers are all excellent at soft skills.

Regular schools give the solution first and then the problem. Flipped classrooms do the exact opposite of this. This improves the ability of students to solve problems. Such students have better leadership qualities and stay relevant continuously.

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