This blog is one in a series on the future of education. Sergio Mena Jara, Vice-Rector of Postgraduate and Professional Development & Dean of Faculty for Economics and Business at San Sebastián University in Chile, offers insights on the below questions around the future of education, and how technology plays a role in learner success.
How will teaching and learning practices over the next 10 years have to evolve to serve the learners of the future?
The good news is that digital teaching and learning are continuing to evolve. We have recently seen instructional designers use more and better tools that allow you to create unique and different learning experiences. Students are also continuing to evolve; they are increasingly requiring more stimulation to stay motivated and connected to their learning environment. Therefore, we must work harder. Our biggest challenge is to constantly innovate and search for new techniques, new tools, and mechanisms that meet the expectations of our future students.
What role will technology like analytics and data play in improving outcomes for learners in the next decade?
Data analysis is essential even today and will be much more within the next ten years. Without it, how would it be possible to assess whether students are learning more, better and faster than before?
If we agree that one of our challenges will be innovation for learning, we have to ask ourselves how can we measure whether a given innovation effectively improved student learning? There is only one answer: good decisions are made with information and not by intuition. If we really want to improve, then we need data analysis.
How will the college/university of 2030 be different than today?
Ten years is a short time to think about significant changes in an education system that has been around for more than 1,000 years. Therefore, in ten years the colleges and universities will not be very different from today.
But in 20 years I expect that things will be different. There will have been a profound transformation of the teaching and learning process.
What role will technology partners play in helping shape the future of how education is delivered?
The main function of educational institutions is to train their students in the discipline. It is not the development of technological platforms, videoconferencing systems, LMS or proctoring tools. It would also be very complex and expensive to maintain that development in the best world standard. Therefore, technology partners who strive to innovate and make significant efforts to improve their quality will be relevant actors in the future of education.
Sergio Mena Jara, MBA is currently Vice-Rector of Postgraduate and Professional Development and Dean of Faculty for Economics and Business at the San Sebastián University (USS) in Chile. He has designed and implemented various projects and development areas, such as USS Online Learning, USS Language Center, the Labor Certification and Skills Center, the Prior Learning Recognition Area, the Department of Consulting.