Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.
- William Butler Yeats, Poet
Education is not merely a word that describes academics. It goes far beyond that and encompasses something we all try to imagine or grasp in a single lifetime. Education is essentially what we call “learning” in its truest sense. Despite every human’s right to education, it is extremely inaccessible to people at times. Now, this is where the concept of customized learning (as part of the newest education reform) comes into play. Things are not only restricted to the corridors of schools and colleges.
Students these days are gradually figuring out new ideas, resources, and learning tools in order to embrace a much more interactive and customized education, which could add more values to their lives in the long run. However, the question is “are we yet to discover more crucial facets of the new education system and customized learning, or is it the end of the road for us?” While there are too many questions, here are a few probabilities and data-driven facts mentioned below for a fairer idea of yours about this particular context of the discussion.
The E-learning Market and its Probable Scenario
Reportedly, the E-learning market in today’s date is about thirteen years old. And according to another report, 4,600,000 students are presently attending one of their online classes. By 2019, almost all classes will be conducted online. This is indeed an indication that the education scenario and market around us is changing rapidly, and would only reach new heights of reformation and revolution in the upcoming days.
The question is, how far we have been successful in introducing e-learning in every educational institution? Is every student across the globe e-learning oriented and tech savvy? Now, in order to embrace this change and make customized learning more valuable, competitive and interactive for the students, what reformation could be brought forth? Here’s a brief inclusion of some of the key points that I believe could reveal the true potential of customized and modern learning. Have a look:
- Recruitment of tech-savvy academicians
Even though the change has entered the realm of education in the form of new academic learning methodologies, but how far have we been successful in leveraging its true potential? Is it still hiding in plain sight? The UNESCO ‘S 2017-2018 Global Education Monitoring Report suggest an additional contribution of €33 billion per year could help in improving the quality of the schools present worldwide, and would also help around 2.2 billion children to have access to better education and learning.
Now that the stats are somewhat alarming, it calls for tech-savvy educators to take charge of the job so that online assignment help and virtual modes of education could help students get access to learning, any time and at any age, regardless of the fact whether they have attended schools and colleges in the past.
- Tailor-made learning methodologies need to be introduced
The idea is not to introduce something abruptly and then expect students to embrace and follow the same. Rather, things should not be forcibly driven, neither to be imposed without a thorough understanding of the fact that the students are aware of what’s being taught and that they are comfortable with the learning process. So, this is where customized education comes in, where students could be on the right track, by following a customized path that allows them to connect with lessons and academic modules belonging to their individual fields of education.
The concept of new education is to discontinue conventional methods and make the entire process of learning more meaningful and value-driven. Students these days are using online videos as resources and references in order to learn about things in a much more interactive manner. But the bigger idea, according to me, is to utilize more of such resources and make customized education a global phenomenon in the days to come.
Can we not refrain from defining learning spaces for the students?
This is again a point of concern that makes me think that we might not have leveraged the entire potential of the revolution which has come to us at least a decade ago. What is it with a “well-defined” learning space? Why is it necessary for a student to sit on the chair and learn about things, even if he wishes to sit on the floor and get involved in interactive activities, learn things in this own terms (of course if it’s adding to the values) and grasp knowledge on various subjects?
Customized learning is probably about the change the game, and could make things more interesting and valuable for the students. Reportedly, customized learning and the entire concept behind it is being embraced by many.
It is basically creating an environment where students in a classroom can sit at a table, at the desk, on the floor or anywhere else, thus, discarding or breaking the stereotype of staying around a pre-determined learning space, which, in most of the case is a desk or a bench in a classroom. This independence of attending classes and learning things the way you want is something which can change things for better, and make the entire educational scenario more fun and meaningful for enthusiastic learners.
As long as students are disciplined, moderate and organized, interactive and independent learning methodology is probably the right choice to make.
On the contrary, strict disciplines and other stringencies brought forth by the academic officials can have a negative impact on the students. Posted in howtoadult.com, strict disciplines and stringencies can give rise to negative consequences, resulting in teenagers adopting the rebellious behavior, low-self esteem, anger and disrespectful attitude towards parents. Now, it is certainly up to us to decide whether a strict discipline, classroom strictness, and restrictions would add value to the lives of students in this era of modern education or it would only make things worse and less valuable for them.
“Students’ Voice” is the term and key to Personalized Learning
Customized or tailor-made education is mostly of the students, by the students, and for the students. Here comes the significance of certain words like “opinion,” “self-belief,” “voice,” “insightful learning” and the likes. Now the question is, are we roping in academic learning strategies that could serve the purpose of addressing all minute details, learning approaches, interests, cultural background and academic necessities of the learners? If the answer is “No,” then I believe there’s a need for educators across the world to explore and leverage further potentials of personalized learning in the near future.
Personalized learning is also known as student-centric learning for a reason. The primary goal of this type of learning methodology is to focus on the aspect of student’s well being, rather than showing them a pre-defined and determined path, regardless of considering the fact whether they really are willing to follow the same, or in case they have a different opinion, approach and an unspoken voice in their mind, left unattended and acknowledged.
It has been said that the concept of customized learning has become more popular and widely known among online tutorials, and companies that are into academic services these days. But, is there a compulsion or a stereotype in this matter? Is personalized learning only meant to be restricted to the corridors of online education? Can’t the phenomenon be turned into a regular practice among the educators and academic institutes across the globe?
The real goal of personalized academic learning is to determine all learning needs of the students prior to strategizing all methodologies to be implemented accordingly. It goes without saying that the very concept of customized learning has wide implications, and it is something which cannot be defined in a sentence or two.
However, now that the idea is pretty clear to us that the term primarily refers to the context of student-focused learning, here are a few of the many refined and advanced approaches that can be considered in order to make the most of the concept of new education and personalized learning.
- Dispelling the practice of grouping students into specified academic streams
There are educators and academic institutions across the globe involved in the practice of grouping students into specified streams of study, based on their academic backgrounds, skills and overall performance over the years. However, this is something I believe should be changed and mended for a better outcome in the long run.
Instead of grouping students into different academic streams, one might choose to practice differentiation. Differentiated learning refers to the framework or a strategy where the educators differentiate the learning environment, content, modules, and every other element that could essentially be implemented in order to meet the individual needs of the students.
- Students should start maintaining their personal learning plans
It is not only that the educators are supposed to take the entire responsibility of changing the face of education and make the post of personalized learning, but the learners should equally be responsible in embracing the change and exploring the various other facets of the educational reforms prevalent in today’s world.
Thus, they can consider maintaining a separate plan and strategies essential for a smarter and more constructive learning. Keeping track of their individual progress and performance is an essential thing to consider as far as the term “personalized/customized learning” is concerned.
- At times you also need to keep shorter goals to achieve something big
At times, you should consider taking smaller steps in order to achieve bigger goals. What I am trying to define here is a constructive learning process where educators could reconfigure their academic strategies, and concentrate more on creating smaller yet meaningful faculty, focusing more on the aspect of personalized/customized learning, up close and personal, so that the right knowledge and subject-oriented insights could be provided, based on the individual needs of the students.
Students can be organized into small groups, and dedicated educators can be recruited in order to take charge of each of the groups for a much focused, consistent and subject-oriented interaction and learning process.
- Organizing advisory boards comprising of mentors dedicated to the wellbeing of students
Advisory refers to a scheduled period of time when mentors, academic guides and educators meet students in small groups for the purpose of interacting with them regarding various issues related to their academic life, career and future planning. The primary purpose of setting up an advisory in educational institutions is to ensure the fact that the educators are aware of their student’s whereabouts, and that they know each one of them personally.
The idea is to monitor the growth and progress of each of the students, by being sure of the fact that their academic needs are being met from time to time. This is something I believe is yet another essential point to be considered if we are to talk about leveraging the complete potential of new education and the very concept of personalized learning.
A stronger bonding between teacher and student is perhaps what we need in order to eliminate all odds and miscommunication. And organizing advisories and programs might just provide that much-needed academic assistance and guidance on regular intervals, eventually helping students with an effective future planning and clear career goals post-graduation.
Is there a scope for debate?
Citing a report on personalized learning, as per a 2016 study, “the research evidence behind “personalized learning” remains thin.” It has also been stated that … “School and district leaders have helped turn personalized learning into a multimillion-dollar market, but evaluations of their efforts remain scattered.”
Now, is this something to talk about, hold a debate or raise questions on the limitations and lack of research evidence behind personalization? The reason I believe why limitations are being highlighted and efforts made by school and district leaders to turn personalized learning into a million dollar market is again because of the fact that people over the years had kept this concept hidden in plain sight.
There are further scopes for improvement, and the initiatives are meant to be taken both by the educators and enthusiastic learners across the world. However, the brighter side of the story suggests that researchers have found some promising signs at some of the schools, and there are software applications associated with the significant improvements to have occurred in the realm of student engagement, learning, and interaction.
Thus, to end with, I would like to mention that the newest form of education is a broad area, and cannot be defined in a sentence or two. Educational institutes across the globe, the government of the country and other active members of several authoritative bodies should come together in a collaborative effort to make personalized, modern-day learning more meaningful, beneficial and a globally acclaimed phenomenon. Perhaps, a better reach, seamless communication across the nations and introducing smart technologies at an affordable price at various institutions might just help things game up for a better tomorrow.
Author Bio – Olaila Lee is a marketing expert who is working for an MNC for the past 6 years. She has been associated with Myassignmenthelp as an academic expert for a couple of years and provides assignment help services Apart from writing engaging blogs on marketing, tech and education trends, she likes hiking and surfing when not wooing her international clients with amazing marketing advice.