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Education in post-internet world

Like the calculator for instance, have been used sparingly, for the desire is to ensure that essential skills for grasping the world are not lost. The coming of the internet has changed some assumptions dramatically. The anxiety about losing knowledge in the cracks the exist between generations can no longer be as pressing. The internet is a living granary of knowledge that is permanent. It is a product of intern linked minds, that allows for any individual to pursue curiosity in a free-flowing, non-linear way. It mimics the process through which we really learn-not through books alone, but by combining experience, curiosity, failure and factual knowledge iteratively.

There are some who see the internet as a substitute, the popularity of online learning is evidence of that possibility, but the stronger role of the internet is in transforming secondary education, by allowing it to focus its energies on higher-order purposes. By itself, the internet may not be sufficient in fostering learning; the need for a teacher as well as a structure that builds some discipline continues to be vital. Learning does not take place through the access to knowledge alone, and for all its power, the internet is not a complete and self-contained instrument of teaching. The need to implant facts can give way to a greater emphasis on the ability to learn and build orginal perspectives.

By designing education around an acknowledgement of the internet, it is possible to create a mode of learning that harnesses our intrinsic desire to learn, by asking questions that occur to us as they occur to us. The need to build subject silos diminishes, and the highly programmed sequence in which learning is sought to be brought about can be reimagined. The internet presents knowledge as an alive, additive, interconnected system that feeds on the curiosity of the learner. It invites the user to create knowledge as well as consume it, to experience it in a variety of ways and see it through many eyes.

As broadband connectivity becomes a second form of oxygen, knowledge becomes akin to an additional sense; it will be possible, in some senses to pluck knowledge from ether. To see the internet as yet another technological innovation is to do it injustice, particularly when it comes to education. The opportunity is much more radical; it is possible to completely rethink the meaning of education and to enrich it substantially. It will take experts in the area to work out what education in the post-internet era will look like, but chances are it will not involve asking students to name any four points about Gandhi.
(Via Times INDIA)


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