Demand Higher Education, Teaching Machines II

demandhe (from Source: Brandenburg, U., Carr, D., Donauer, S., Berthold, C. (2008) Analysing the Future Market – Target Countries for German HEIs, Working paper No. 107, CHE Centre for Higher Education Development, Gütersloh, Germany, p. 13. via )

How many teachers does the world need next year? The Graph is only about Higher Education.
Could MOOCs add to a solution for this need for education? Mechanical Teaching, would that be part of a solution?
How to ensure quality of education when there is such a need of teachers? How to pay for the growth of the educational system?


6 thoughts on “Demand Higher Education, Teaching Machines II

  1. This is a difficult set of questions. Best to start with definitions of what we mean by “teaching” and by “learning.” Teachers allow others to see things that weren’t consciously there in their minds by way of persuasive explanation. The person inside the teacher’s body is put together in the same manner as the learner and this allows for trust and fellow sympathy that makes even the wrong answer useful. Machine teaching might fill in for some concepts that are linear but I think the true learning happens when things don’t connect and we need to puzzle over why.
    What it means to be “literate” is being worked on here: International Adult Literacy and Life
    Skills Survey (IALSS)
    2003 report :

    Update in progress:

    I wonder if we are in confusion over what to teach? So much to “know” out there with the internet and I often feel going online like I do when I walk into a large library or temptingly decorated book story–helpless.

    One reason people want education is it changes their station in life but is it only the responsibility of the individual for being in that state of need or is a whole society responsibility?

  2. Best wishes for Christmas and New Year.
    Being teached (do you say that in English?) by real teachers sometimes is better than the use of other sources to learn. But when I was a student some teachers did not really add much to my learning. (Some did!). But now demand of education/learning is very great. In Asia and Africa are no teachers to teach all these students in their schools, colleges and universities. It is not a question of what we would like, real teachers or something else. The question is, how do they make these students learn, and how about the quality of their education.
    And how will this problem and the solutions they find affect and influence our schooling system? If the Asiatic and African solution is cheap, commercial colleges will import the solution and it will change our educational system as well.

  3. The term in English is “taught” for receiving and giving teaching. Read a bit of a report on learning writing skills in US public schools and there was a great deal of emphasis on “right” and “wrong” performance and it worries me that the standards seem fixed on an ideal outcome. Could it be we teach too much detail to prevent mistakes? Instead of listing endless wrong ways to do things we could train people in habits of mind that could detect principals of correctness.*
    Another alternative is to distribute teaching roles among everyone in the school. Instead of a few highly trained teachers (who still may be bad at teaching), encourage a true form of peer to peer teaching. Schools spend too much time assuming students don’t know anything useful, have “undeveloped standards” and are uncritical consumers when in fact school MAKES them that way. When you build a system where only a small minority the population (teachers) are the trustworthy ones and the rest are assumed to be incomplete or even broken. If we start with the assumption that students (kids) start out stupid we’ve already made the whole thing harder than necessary.

    * Habits of Mind –
    >”The Habits of Mind are an identified set of 16 problem solving, life related skills, necessary to
    effectively operate in society and promote strate gic reasoning, insightfulness, perseverance,
    creativity and craftsmanship. The understanding and application of these 16 Habits of Mind serve to provide the individual with skills to work through real life situations that equip that person to respond using awareness (cues), thought, and intentional strategy in order to gain a positive outcome.”<

  4. I’d agree with Lisa on the principal that what is being done right now on most campuses is worthy of support. Regardless of cost or “inconvenience” to the student of having to meet at a physical location like Mira Costa College this version of presenting knowledge does work and is adaptable. Reducing education to a kind of broadcast media model taught by simulated teachers relies on an averaging out of students at a distance from the students. The unresponsiveness of machine MOOCs cheats us of our natural desire to question a topic. It’s a studio production model of training that seems awfully shallow.
    This model is directed to the self-preservation of the program being presented with students merely sub-units to be managed. It isn’t without a form of dynamic behaviour except those variables that make it potentially interesting are muffled or re-defined by the need for system stability.
    My question would be do we need all forms of educational delivery to be modeled after the traditional? Isn’t the first responsibility for education to understand (not predict) the needs of the student?

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