1. A Learning Model for the Future – Aoun, J. 2017.

A Learning Model for the Future – Response to Aoun, J. 2017. A Learning Model for the Future. In Higher education in the age of artificial intelligence. MIT Press. pp45-75.

This essay is about the effects of technology in our lives. It states that our current workforce is not equipped with the skills it needs for modern day jobs. The new discipline Aoun suggests in the essay is ‘Humanics’ which can be divided in to three main literacies, Technological Literacies, Data Literacies and Data Literacies.

Firstly, Aoun talks about how creative thinking can be encouraged through the way we teach. Pure creative talent is a gift that only very few people in the world have but by being encouraged to think divergently a student can develop creative thinking method. Divergent thinking is the creation of multiple responses in a flow of ideas and is associated with playfulness and willingness to take risks. It is the

Cognitive thinking is when we aim to find the single, correct, answer to a question or problem. This is the type of ‘thinking’ that advance computers are able to do.

Our current educational system does not encourage divergent thinking and is said to ‘kill creativity by stigmatising wrong answers’. I watched a TED TALK video by Ken Richardson which I found extremely interesting. Ken says ‘We don’t grow into creativity. We grow out of it, or rather we get educated out of it’ I work with a student studying IVM at LCC and he has Aspergers, he is an instinctively creative person and I am curious to think about how his disability may affect the way he thinks creatively.  We are told the knowledge of facts makes us clever or smart but I believe the ability to think divergently and creatively is an important skill to teach our students. Currently I think schools and universities could be doing more to teach students to think creatively as it will be invaluable to them in work and personal life.

The facts of ‘The Literacies- Technological, Data and Human.’

The new literacies arise from technology e.g. texts, blog, social network. These digital forms change the way we communicate. The ability to read and write used to mean power and freedom, now the ability to network with both humans and machines has a similar value.

Technological is the understanding of mathematics, coding and basic engineering principles.’ (P. 57) Letter and number have been studied in schools for hundreds of years as it was the fundamentals of human combination, now that technology is taking over this we must learn not only how to use technology but how it works, especially in the creative environment for example, how to make the new software program that will send image or data to each other.

Data literacies in short in the collection of information and how to read it.  The ability to read data can be extremely important in educating ourselves and advancing our knowledge. Aoun gives the example of being able to foresee ‘the spread of a virus across a continent to an individual’s dating preferences.’ P.57

Human Literacies is interacting with other humans. The ability to socially commutate and engage with others. I think this is the most important literacy. An office or university can have all the right facilities and technology but if it cannot create personal relationships within their society it will not succeed. Diversity is essential in human literacy for students to learn to their full potential.

Critical Thinking is ‘thinking over an idea in a skilful way and then applying them to create something new. Critical thought has many different element; for example, the understanding and applying of facts to a question or understanding how people are motivated or how emotions can affect them. When all these are applied to the context of a situation, a person is critically thinking. If a problem can be answered in a couple of yes and no answers a computer could resolve the issue but many real-world problems require critical thinking.

What these few captures explain to me is that a student does not come to university to learn from books or researching the internet. They learn from each other, from seminars and experimentation in the workshops. This involves teaching across subject areas on a project that are engaged with real life experience.

The ‘new model of learning’ tells us students want to know ‘what and why’ they are learning the lessons or skills we are teaching. This can be done by clearly indicating what is excepted of them in a curriculum.  Each lesson states the learning outcomes and how to build on their system and critical thinking. Students need to be able to understand how these new forms of teaching will help them in their goals not simply at university but industry. The main point that I understood from this text was that although technology is able to do more and more tasks a human would normally do, it/they cannot think creativity. Humans think creatively and have many ‘oceans of knowledge to cross’. This is showing the importance of teaching of thinking creatively and understand not only what technologies can do but what it cannot do.

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