Higher Ed

Inside and Outed

"Professors who are good at mentoring will thrive"

CJ Westerberg, July 25, 2013 5:29 PM


quote and pix above:  Joi Ito - Head of MIT Media Lab

The future of universities, MOOCs, lectures,
and the flipped class

Worthwhile video (below) from a recent Pearson conference w/Joi Ito, Head of MIT Media Lab (another notable college drop-out who was recently awarded an honorary degree).

Go straight to the 12:00 (12 minute) mark through - 17:00 

Some highlights:

  • Likes the "Flipped Classroom" model, where in-person, on campus mentorship and apprenticeship are key roles for professors
  • The future of professors who are just lecturers is questionable
  • If kids can pick the best professor via a video, what happens to the 3rd and 4th best professor?
  • The role of mentoring is tremendously important
  • Those professors who are good at mentoring will thrive

(Editor's Note: Do I think the "lecture" is dead?
Not necessarily.  We listen to TED talks (if they're good).  Last week, I listened to several
of Joi Ito's talks to curate the "best" ones for you - and they are essentially lectures, disguised as keynotes.
So, the answer is this:  it depends. 
Is what the teacher (lecturer) has to say compelling to the particular audience?  Also a nod to the delivery style - how the message is delivered, length as well, but that is not the whole picture . . .  C.J. Westerberg)


Also worth noting at the 16:00 mark:

  • There is no such thing as a normal person
  • As Seth Godin said we are all weird - all misfits
  • And that is where assessments break down - since they are standardized
MOOCs: The Craiglist of College? via American Interest

The Flipped Class Manifest via The Daily Riff

Cornell Professor Roars at Yawning Student via The Daily Rif

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The secret message communicated to most young people today by the society around them is that they are not needed, that the society will run itself quite nicely until they - at some distant point in the future - will take over the reigns. Yet the fact is that the society is not running itself nicely... because the rest of us need all the energy, brains, imagination and talent that young people can bring to bear down on our difficulties. For society to attempt to solve its desperate problems without the full participation of even very young people is imbecile.
Alvin Toffler
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