The Intersection

Learning to Learn for the 21st Century

July 19, 2013

“We do know at least one thing that students will need to know in the future: how to learn. We need to set students up to learn outside of college for the rest of their lives. We need to shift from facilitating learning to developing learners.” Paul T. Corrigan, editor for Teaching & Learning in Higher Ed, addresses in his article, “Preparing Students For What We Can’t Prepare Them For,” the question of how are students to be prepared for 21st century careers when those jobs – along with the technologies that will be used  – do not exist yet?

Corrigan makes references to the video, Shift Happens, by educators Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod, explaining that our world has changed drastically in information and technologies, and will continue to do so in the future. “The amount of new technical information is doubling every two years. For students starting a four year technical college degree, this means that half of what they learn in in their first year of study will be outdated by their third year of study,” says Fisch and McLeod.

Corrigan acknowledges the most recent “shift” in decades was from “teaching” to “learning,” and then proclaims there is a much needed shift now to teach students to know “how to learn” for the future. He simply tweaks the old teaching adage to say: “Teach a person to fish, and they will eat for a lifetime. Teach a person to learn, and they will be able to do just about whatever they need to do in a lifetime.”

To read the full article, go here.

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