The Future and Education

The future of education is a technologically and cost driven concept. We live in a society where anybody at anytime can find a “smart” phone and answer any question the wish. From a child, we are given old phones to play with, new tablets go learn with and leap frog games to entertain us. Visually appealing and speedy technology are sought after in all walks of life these days. Whether it’s purchasing the fastest laptop for the office or experiencing the next Nintendo game. As we become entranced with speeding up our processes via electronic gadgets and beloved entertainment gizmos capture our attention, we’re seeing a change in the way we view the classroom. Our learning environment today is shifting away from a quiet room with books in lengthy lectures. Instead, our culture is floating toward a tech savvy, visual, and comfortable setting. Replacing that traditional library environment with a current American living room habitat.

Laptop U by Nathan Heller, explores the future of online education. What if you could experience the rare and legendary lessons from Harvard professors? Today you can log into your computer take a “Massive open online course” with exclusive lessons from the “elite” colleges such as Harvard, Princeton, and UC Berkeley. Mooc courses open doors to higher education for men and women of America who may not be able to afford or attend classes regularly. Instead, on your own time in the comfort of your own living room you can better yourself and your mind.

Renown professor Gregory Nagy of Harvard is an online education supporter. Nagy’s filled Harvard courses have crossed paths onto the internet admitting near thirty one thousand students. Rather than writing papers students will fill out comprehensive multiple choice questions and tests. The idea or the “flipped classroom” is growing rapidly. However, I believe that one major question that arises is , are we substituting quality for quantity? Heller states” universities are special places, we believe: gardens where chosen people escape their normal lives to cultivate the Life of the mind”(page6) When you attend a university you encounter real interaction and focused learning. The cost and time dedication for these colleges are enormous, yet you know when you attend you were there, talking and listening to a real professor at the campus. Quality may be compromised if you are gazing at the computer screen while cooking lunch or sitting in bed.

Sara Corbett of The New York Times explored new ways of teaching with children. “Digital games are cultural to the lives of children.” What if we re-imagined the classroom as an American living room? Mixing entertainment with learning. Perhaps making learning more fun and interactive will prove to be more successful for learners in the long run.

The New Atlas focuses on our culture moving onto a digitally dependent world. Mathew Crawford claims “the engineering has developed in recent years in which the object is to “hide the works”. (page1) What ordinary people once made and fixed they now replace or buy new. In relation, there is a decline in the desire to learn one trade, for craftsmanship, an manual work. Colleges and early school years usually guide you away from manual jobs. “The fear that acquiring a specific skill means that one’ slide is determined.” Whereas in college you’re more free. I can relate to this article myself as a mechanic and young apprentice. I agree with Mathew when he states that work becomes a part of you. Manual work takes dedication, patience, and self-growth. Most people I believe, can’t say they can dedicate themselves to one single task until it is done properly. It gives me instant visual accomplishment when I complete a job. I feel pride when I look at my work and it makes me stronger as an individual.

Personally, I feel we’re moving too fast, incorporating video games into learning and online courses for every aspect or learning. It seems we as a society are trying everything possible to make learning similar to entertainment or leisure time. There will always be people who thrive off personal interaction, asking questions, and old-fashioned dedicated learning from a professor. On the opposite side, there will always be those individuals who have kids and jobs and can’t reach out for college. We need to find a middle ground where learning can be fun and interactive, yet teach dedications and patience for future years.

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