Paradigm Shift in Education

June 13th, 2011

At the Speculist Blog, Leslie Kirschner writes about the paradigm shift in education evidenced in the very cool Khan Academy, which provides short, concise free educational videos on anything you could imagine.

Thinking further about what will be possible when this type of educational experience is the norm, it makes ideas like continuous lifetime learning, more precise matching of knowledge and skills to jobs, and the transition of the teaching profession into “learning consultants” really practical and, in my mind, inevitable. No longer will we need “one-size fits all” standardized curricula, tests, textbooks, degrees, or other credentials. Education can then be truly customized to meet the needs and desires of the individual, transforming from something you have to do or that you just do in school, to an ongoing, integrated part of your life. THAT will be the real paradigm shift, and I can see it on the horizon!

I could not agree more with this transformation. Elsewhere I have written about a law professor evolving from a Langdellian Oracle to an aggregator, a guide on the side, who can pull together the relevant information and facilitate learning. No longer is the Professor this vaunted image–a “Sage on the stage”– that knows and understands¬†everything. Learning is so multifaceted. Limiting it to the 4 corners of a law school classroom is selling students short.