16 Nov Educating for the fourth industrial revolution
With technology rapidly changing our economic, cultural and social realities, the question of how to prepare the younger, and even the current, generation for the fourth industrial revolution has been a pressing issue for contemporary higher education.
How do we educate for the fourth industrial revolution? Are our education systems and programmes relevant to the fourth industrial revolution? And if not, how do we reconstruct our education systems so that they are?
Fourth industrial revolution
Although there have been debates about whether current developments in technology are the late part of the third industrial revolution – the advent of information and communications technology or ICT – or constitute the advent of the fourth industrial revolution, it is increasingly clear that the rapid development of technology has changed everyone’s economic, social and cultural status quo.
The fourth industrial revolution is said to be ushered in by advancements in robotics, virtual reality, cloud technology, big data, artificial intelligence, the internet of things and other technologies. It is characterised by the fusion of technologies and the blurring of the lines between the physical, digital and biological aspects of life.
These technologies are predicted to have a significant effect on our daily lives, including the way we learn, especially if we are to prepare the younger generation and re-educate the current generation for changing work, social and cultural environments.
In spite of the fact that we are starting to discuss the advent of the fourth industrial revolution, our social infrastructure has been painfully slow to adapt to technological advances and their impact on our work and social life.
In spite of various conversations on student-centred learning, learning outcomes, lifelong learning and even on the use of ICT in education, the education sector, and higher education in particular, is still adopting antiquated methods of facilitating learning. Curricula and programmes can barely catch up with the needs of industry and contemporary social life. Continue Reading…