How to become a
Prof M.M. Pant's Welcome Message
Around 2500 years ago (ca 387 BC), Plato had an inscription at his academy in Athens that read, “Let no one ignorant of geometry enter.” The road to the 21st century however, has an unwritten advice, “Only ÜberSmart Self-directed Autonomous Learners are Welcome”. So no bans, but genuine friendly advice.
Why is it so? We have moved over a relatively short period of a couple of decades to an information abundant and hyper-connected society. It’s greatest effect has been a greater challenge on all of us to become life-long learners, who have to continue to learn, unlearn and relearn for ever. Somewhat like in the Red Queen’s race in Lewis Carrol’s Through the Looking Glass – “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”
So, the ritual of education alone will not take you far. If you really want to go some place, you have to do more than just traditional compliance with the mandatory requirements.
Let me explain the terms used in the title of this program. I coined the term ÜberSmart Learner to describe a learner who is well versed in current information skills and can learn almost anything on his or her own from existing information resources and social media, and then demonstrate the learning at a comparable level to one who has been formally taught the same stuff, and then some more. That is the ‘Über’.
An automobile is something that moves on the basis of its own mechanisms, without having to be pulled or pushed by another. An autonomous learner, also called an autodidact, is one who is driven to learning on his own, and a self-directed learner can satisfactorily respond to why and what should he learn, how to learn and knowing that he has learnt what he set out to learn?
Schools are doing Education 1.0; talking about doing Education 2.0; when they should be planning and implementing Education 3.0.
Education 1.0, the ritual of education is largely a one-way process where the 3Rs are not reading, writing, arithmetic, as they say, but actually – receive in class lectures, respond by taking notes and doing assignments and worksheets and regurgitate in exams. Education 2.0 includes more interaction between the teacher and student; student to student; and student to content/expert. But we will move on to Education 3.0 which is based on the belief that content is freely and readily available. It is self-directed, interest-based learning where problem-solving, innovation and creativity drive the learning.
Education 3.0 is a constructivist, heutagogical approach to teaching and learning. The teachers, learners, networks, connections, media, resources, tools – all create a unique entity that has the potential to meet individual learners’, educators’, and even societal needs.
Many learners aren’t all that well prepared by traditional or present day schooling to handle the massive flow of information and the continual need for upgrading their knowledge and skills that are demanded for flourishing and thriving in the “knowledge, innovation, creative ideas economy” in which we now live.
We’re at the dawn of a new era, in which the focus has shifted to potential to deal with the future, rather than certified skills, knowledge or experience acquired in the past. In a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environment (VUCA is the military-acronym-turned-corporate-buzzword), the most critical attribute is whether you have the potential to learn?
And this course will help you get ready to prosper and flourish in the future.
My best wishes for success.
Stay Connected, Keep Learning!