In the recent years, two people have tried to disrupt the education system of the world and they have made a good start. Sal Khan and Saugata Mitra both have started a disruption by their own unique way of spreading education. While Khan Academy of Sal Khan is a more collaborative and crowd sourced way of learning and imparting education, Saugata Mitra who won $1million TED prize in 2013 for his concept of schools in cloud, believes in self organized learning via cloud.
Needless to say school, would be a fun place to be in for our future generation!
On a serious note, we all know that there is a paucity of trained teachers, and the education system is such that it neither compensates teachers well nor does it attempt to optimize their talent and time completely.
Coupled with this we have 2 extremes of education in India, The elite (IITs etc.) and the rest of them. It beats me, why doe we have such extremes, given that everyone has a right to education why do we have a dual standard in terms of quality of education?
I believe that in the next decade, the concept of schools and universities, as we know them now, will vanish. This will be replaced by Cloud Platforms which will be a collaborative compendium of knowledge dissemination and consumption
Students will not study in schools but will get enrolled in CLOUD PLATFORMS, and then choose classes, teams, courses, exams as per their desire and comfort
Let us understand some obvious and non-obvious implications of cloud on education system:
1. On demand course and quiz- What if the exams can be taken at leisure, when one is ready? What if students only pay for chapters they consume? What if students and teachers together decide on chapters from a list of prescribed books, instead of restricting to only one book per subject?
I need not write the answers to above you would have already realized the power of on demand education. There would be no missing classes or exams even when you are absent or ill and bed ridden. The scope of imbibing knowledge widens because one is not restricted to single author now.
2. Collaboration, Benchmarking and Gaming: This will be interesting. Partner schools on one cloud platform can collaborate and create joint cultural, educative and scientific projects/programs. Infact the cloud may just make the schools redundant. It will not matter whether you study in a private or a government college- because they all would be on one platform.
More importantly, students compete with each other across schools, cities and countries. They can track themselves on a global leaderboard and can get much wider recognition and opportunities.
Working in cross- cultural, cross-country teams will make each student a global citizen, they will be able to choose classes by ratings and reviews, and a points system can help them or their teams maintain discipline , because they get rewarded by their smallest of actions.
3. Life Long Learning- Students will always stay connected to the cloud platform and will be alerted basis new or improved courses, alteration in their rank, update needed for certifications etc. Big data will also come at play, and based on data analysis of similar profile of people, one can be suggested various programs at various life stages.
I am personally excited at this prospect as cloud will now help teaches get their true due and get a wider scope and on demand learning opportunity for students.
It would also reduce a wide spread disparity in education and will allow hundreds of thousands of students to take an IIT degree or IIM degree because these exams would be open 24*7, for an unlimited volume of users and from any background of study, as log as they can clear a set of exams over a period of time.
I am sure you also would have some thoughts and a critical opinion of cloud. We would love to share your opinion with the community. Do write at firstname.lastname@example.org