“Knowing something is probably an obsolete idea. You don’t actually need to know anything. … It’s the teacher’s job to point young minds toward the right kind of questions. The teacher doesn’t need to give any answers, because answers are everywhere.” That’s the explanation for how the foundations of education need to change, given as part of the introduction to this short online film, The Future of Learning. If the past involved the memorization of facts and concepts (because you needed them in your head) the future–where all these facts are available at our fingertips–should involve a new way of learning.
The Future of Learning was made by Ericsson as part of their Networked Society series (we wrote about their excellent installment on cities a few months ago). This next video checks in with companies like Knewton and Coursera about their quest to use technology to help engage all children and make the learning experience both more engaging and more streamlined.
The whole piece offers an inspirational view of what the future of education might be. Getting there is probably harder than Seth Godin’s solution of having colleges stop using SATs as an admission criteria, but the vision of an education system that allows every child, anywhere in the world, succeed in the way best suited for them, is certainly a valuable goal. If that is what technology can bring to the classroom, then may it come as fast as possible.