17 Jan Next Generation Learning Challenges
There is a lot of talk about Generation Z, the young people born after 1995 who are now entering the job market. We must admit that their way of working has little to do with what we were familiar with. They were born and grew up with the Internet and social networks, leading to a different way of accessing information – and even culture – and processing it.
But contrary to what we could deduce from our behavioral observation, these young people have a real thirst for learning and use a large part of their free time for activities that they themselves describe as productive and creative.
Learning methods based on new technologies
To what extent can we offer them the keys to successful and appropriate learning? One thing is for sure, they need motivation and find it difficult to engage without interest or passion.
Once they have identified this, they will initially do their own research to find out more and will turn to learning methods based on new technologies and games with a community dimension, and the idea of developing the notion of belonging to a group that knows why it is doing one task rather than another.
The new generation is trying to reconfigure the very notion of learning that it intends to apply to itself. It is no longer the time to intellectualize lessons: life has created a demand for the immediate application of skills. Experiences are meant to be shared, and field learning is a safe bet.
To a certain extent, the university system as we have known it has passed away. We need to develop learning communities. Education must enable individuals and nations to identify and develop the knowledge and skills that will generate better jobs and better lives for them.
The prosperity that is supposed to come from this must be socially inclusive. Students are looking for more transparency on how their courses are aligned with their future careers.
By the literal definition of apprenticeship, it is nothing less than a system for training a new generation of practitioners with on-the-job instruction and accompanying studies. This is the case with alternation, a system of teaching a trade based on a practical phase and a theoretical phase in the context of an apprenticeship or professionalization contract.
Is it necessary to emphasize the importance of these professional learning experiences that help young people learn a trade in exchange for working continuously for an agreed upon period of time after acquiring measurable skills.
New educational models
Going to study in the United States has always been a popular choice for students.
Today, EDUCAUSE, a nonprofit association of the world’s largest community of technology, academic, industry, and university leaders, has launched the Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) initiative, which strives to reinvent education by exploring new models, technologies, and pathways to student success aimed at dramatically improving the quality of American learning experiences.
Another example of these new educational methods is the Fondation Jean-François and Marie-Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre, founded in 2009. Its mission is to facilitate access to education and culture for young students. One of its actions is the collaboration with the Happy Child Foundation to cover the basic needs of poor children in Bolivia.
Andrew Carnegie may have known better than most when he said that “ordinary people can do extraordinary things through teamwork.” This great philanthropist and icon of American capitalism would have appreciated the value of networking and the idea of a learning community that brings together the strengths of proven and emerging technologies.
It is more important than ever to mobilize all available intellectual resources to face the problems facing humanity, and pupils and students must also learn to develop behaviors conducive to making possible a collective construction of knowledge: we become what we retain!