Tuesday, June 23, 2015

E-Learning-"When An Irresistible Force Meets An Immovable Object!"--Part I--Education

In our age, change is an irresistible force and change management is becoming more and more of an important skill to possess. The immovable objects are institutionalized education and corporate training regimens.

Credit: Stuart McIntyre

  As a society we place a great emphasis on tradition and this is especially true concerning education and the corporate enterprise. With respect to education, we all have fond memories of the "good old days" when literacy meant reading, writing, and arithmetic and they were the only basics that learners had to possess. There is no other area of human experience that every person has and voices an opinion on more than education. The connections that our societies have made can be reduced to the equation:

Good Education = Sound Employment

Then, along came technology and the Internet and messed everything up or that is what many people think. The same could be said of the corporate culture. In the good old days, everyone knew their place and function. If you didn't follow the flow, you were terminated. However, life in a digital age is no longer that simple. How we deal with change that is brought on by the growing advances in technology, a growing connected world in all aspects of life and the fact of instantaneous communication determines whether we flourish as future healthy societies or become societies defending outdated concepts and practices against the impact of change. The problem is that change in education needs to be managed in a proactive and thoughtful manner with a renewed vision for education in the future. To implement change without careful thought on how to manage its effects leads to resistance which describes the present status of the immovable objects, institutionalized education and corporate training.


The Immovable Object of Institutionalized Education

Question: "How is institutionalized education dealing with change?"

If you examine education institutions today, one of  the big issues is how to integrate technology into the classroom. This is claimed by its advocates as putting 21st century tools into the hands of 21st century learners but does this satisfy the needs of education in the digital age? If we put these tools into the hands of learners, it might raise their hopes that finally adults have started to grow up when it comes to technology but has anything actually changed? If it has changed, why is there still a growing number of learners who have technologically advanced classrooms that are still disconnecting from their education.
As an example, we are still proceeding with standardized testing which was a product of the old model of education instead of personalized education. Its just that now, we are using high level technology to continue doing what we always have done.


We are still using the same static pedagogy which we now have enshrined as best practices. We are still operating from the same tired vision of education. We are still training teachers to teach using the same methodologies, with the proviso that they must use 21st century technology so that the immovable object of education can appear to be a transformative force in the lives of learners. This should not be construed as an indictment against educators who labour under the direction of those holding political power. It is an indictment of those who use their political power to maintain the status quo in education; who use educators, students and the system to maintain a tired and discredited vision of education. They are the ones who starve innovation and essential change through control of funding. More money is spent on the state taking parental responsibilities on to themselves than is spent in re-designing a badly dated education system.

The sad truth is that they believe and capitalize on the belief that it is the teachers who are the  problem !

Next post.... Business institutions and change management

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