Sunday, September 30, 2007

University lecturers of the 21st Century - Data Intermediaries

There is a romantic ideal I have of universities which borders on the Aristotlean.

Ampitheatres with lecturers and students exchanging views which cover a breadth of subjects, tutorials where students swap roles with lecturers, and greater links between academia and industry, where we oscillate from one to the other.

The University of Lancashire's case links its academic institution with Johnston Press one of the most successful news publishers, to examine the newsroom of the future.

And there's more, which it would be wrong to talk about now.

So the question I wanted to know was what might universities look like in the decades ahead?

The Vice Chancellor of the University of Westminster, Dr Geoffrey Copland, since retired claimed universities were one of the few places that had not embraced the Net revolution, comparing it to the travel industry where you can do almost anything online.

I discovered his views from being asked to present at Digital Hollywood and made this short film - The Future of Universities.

Full article and short interviews with senior educationists e.g. Dr Elizabeth Goodman here

In this edited short film Dr Copland mentions the ff:

  • Student working from a home base

  • No face to face lectures

  • There will be celebrity lectures

  • Students will devise their own curriculum

  • Students may opt for a full degree or part of a degree

  • They may take modules and cash in their credits later, so a degree could take any length of time

  • Lectures, notes will be open source ideas

  • With the wealth of information, lecturers may occupy a role of data intemediaries- sifting what's relevant for students

  • We live in interesting times. What do you think?

    NB Views expressed here are in no way a reflection of David's current university and its policies. These views are personal.

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