Cracking the Future of Education Code (w/ KnowledgeWorks)

A report from 2009, from KnowledgeWorks called 2020 Forecast: Creating the Future of Learning caught my attention.  It identifies six major drivers of change that might unleash a wild  world of learning quite unlike any system of schooling we’ve ever experienced.  What I’m finding is that it’s increasingly a story-driven game that places students at the center of their learning experience, much like an MMORPG.  In any case, the singularity is one narrative I imagine will drastically alter what it means to be a student interfacing with a world undergoing ecological and economic shifts.

In the section called Altered Bodies we’re reminded that neuroscientists  have begun to design neuro-enhancements that might soon provide “customized learning experiences” that push the boundaries of ethics and cognitive rights.  Learners are forecast to have “more and more options for modifying their minds and bodies in support of peak performance even as they navigate increasing levels of bio-distress.”  I’m reminded of what H.G. Wells would say is urgently needed to prevent our own extinction, “the evolution of a new more powerful type of man.”

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Cracking the Future of Education Code (w/ KnowledgeWorks)

Google Is Like a ‘Mental Prosthetic’

Research suggests we’re less likely to memorize much from the “influx of information,” simply because it’s so readily available online.

“Thinking with computers is a natural extension of that. In the same way you depend on a friend, now you depend on Google,” Daniel Wegner at Harvard, told TechNewsWorld.

Instead, the brain will more often remember where the information can be retrieved, rather than what the information actually is.

“We’re a lot smarter now, and that’s why we use it. We’ve become somewhat addicted because it really extends mental capacities. It’s kind of like a mental prosthetic device that’s better than what you’ve had before,” Wegner said.

According to Paul Reber, professor and director of brain, behavior and cognition at Northwestern University, our brain is wisely strategizing.

“There’s no evidence we are forgetting things more rapidly now than before the Internet. It seems likely that with a much larger amount of information generally around, we are probably trying to remember more. In addition to studying what we forget, it would be important to look at how much we remember,” Reber said.

 

Google Is Like a ‘Mental Prosthetic’