The question in the last post at the end is an important one:
With the networks already in place, a transformation needs to take place in which the professionals collaborate to:
"What happens in cross disciplinary collaboration if those who are tasked with coming up with a solution to a real world issue lack the level of knowledge and skill set development to complete the task?"
This is where access to a network of mentors becomes important. Professionals in the disciplines, especially the sciences, are already recognizing the importance of cross disciplinary learning in their research efforts.
- establish frameworks to operate from
- to identify areas where there is overlap in their skill sets and coordinate what they offer for the best fit as a resource for students
- to extend their professional networks mission beyond collaboration for research purposes to include a mentoring relationship with promising students as they collaborate to solve real world issues. Within this mentoring relationship they would help keep students up to date in advances within their disciplines as they pertain to the real world issues that students are tasked with solving and make available a forum where students can present their solutions for real and relevant feedback.
Obvious Question: "Why should the disciplines want to take on such an endeavour that might be quite time sensitive? How would the disciplines benefit from such an ambitious arrangement?"
- Through the continued association with students, they will obtain insight into students who demonstrate attributes and skill sets that fit well with the needs for the future growth of their disciplines. They will be able to determine if students have an interest in pursuing their specific discipline as a profession. If so, then a mutually agreed upon mentor relationship can be established as part of the student's personal learning plan to help guide the student in developing their skills.
- The mentors can benefit from "fresh thinking" that breaks them out from set patterns and allows them to entertain student initiated innovative ideas from a different perspective.
- These students can become the new "life blood" of cross disciplinary learning that leads to future evolution in the specific areas.
- Collaboration takes on a global context with a focus on the future with the goal of developing a vibrant culture of innovation.
Next.....E-Learning: A Blueprint to the Future- Instructional Designers, Trainers and Business Innovation--Part II