Economics, education, art, #change11 Unshaven thoughts about education

In 1984 Gerrit van Bakel did a lecture at the Technical University Twente ‘Elements of an artificial landscape‘.

” … I think that in the hierarchy of knowledge and learning a change has taken place. Or that it is possible to detect one. My point of departure is that there was once a time when philosophy for instance was a sort of mother of all forms of knowledge, was the source where everything came from, all knowledge and learning. In my opinion this is in itself not mistaken. It is however at any rate true that this is no longer the case. The situation now is that economics, which in my opinion is not a science, but a way of thinking that admittedly employs scientific methods, plays a more decisive role than does one’s grasp of a subject or any other specific quality. …”

Connect this economical world view to education.
In an economic system goal-orrientednes and purposefulness is a basic believe. In an economic world people act to earn some profit.
In an economic system students and learning results are commodities.

“The labor theories of value are heterodox economic theories of value which argue that the value of a commodity is related to the labor needed to produce or obtain that commodity.” 

“Commodity fetishism denotes the mystification of human relations said to arise out of the growth of market trade, when social relationships between people are expressed as, mediated by and transformed into, objectified relationships between things (commodities and money).” 

Gardner Campbell argued that we are engaging in a factory model of student education, rather than one that reflects the complexity inherent in actual learning. In my favorite section, he uses analogies such as a daily pill box and cows feeding at a trough to convey his points. (Liza M. Lane).
Seen from this angle schools first are economic institutions.

In an nonprofit world people act because the act is rewarding in itself. An amateur loves to do or play or study and that is why he is doing it.

In those factories good teachers try to keep up humanity. Schools are closed systems. Teachers try to connect students to the real world outside, but that is not easy. Individuals are secondary to the system. The system is a safe haven for  student  who fit into the system, but when students do not fit in the system they are expelled. A MOOC is an open system. Students are autonomous and that is not safe at all.
Educational industry will copy MOOC and change it into part of the closed system.

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