Jon Kolko at Austin Center for Design has a great piece up responding to a piece by Dennis Littky
on how pedagogy has, and hasn’t changed with technology and new understanding of how people learn. Kolko relates this to fundamental design principles that he tries to enact in his new experimental school, the Austin Center for Design.
“Of the low-income students who don’t drop out of high school and graduate with good enough grades to actually go to college, only 11 percent will make it through the process…We’ve blamed the media, the parents, and the kids themselves. Perhaps it’s time to start blaming the design of the education process—the design of the institution of education itself.

“Designers use synthesis to quickly learn new things and integrate new perspectives with their existing worldview. They are, to some degree, experts in learning, and the critical ingredients seem to translate to a strong pedagogy of education. These ingredients include primary and generative research, active participation, critique and coaching, and the ability to take risks (and potentially be wrong) without negative consequences.”

Kolko sees an incipient revolution. I do too. What excites me most as a top level trend is the phenomenon of great minds from different domains–design, technology, entrepreneurship–being drawn to the reinvention of education as a cool challenge to take on.

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