A Dualistic Model of Education
Though necessity has shown that exclusively online schooling can work, the experience has truly clarified what place it should hold need subsides.
16:36 24 August 2021
Though recent necessity has shown that exclusively online schooling can work, the experience has truly clarified what place it should hold as the need subsides. Combining the best of both the virtual and physical approaches can give rise to a dualistic model of education, one that provides deep learning, communication skills, and practice in application for students to be well equipped to excel.
To learn deeply is to master the skills and connect the information coherently within a subject, things not particularly valued in the cram-and-test model that schools often use. Mastery and retention are built individually and require specific techniques, both of which are greatly aided by information technology. For example, online libraries of content Paper-Research and SwiftPapers offer students flexibility and accessibility in their learning. This allows each to learn at their own pace at any time of day, use passive and interactive media that fit their style of learning, overcome language barriers, and surmount special needs individually. As for techniques to develop mastery, software is continuously being programmed to include key methods such as chunking, interleaving, spaced repetition, gamification, and more at higher levels as metrics provide insight that companies, educators, and students may use to streamline their processes. Time spent on theory outside the classroom is time saved from lectures that can instead be used for other, more interactive undertakings.
As the global community is now the stage for each student’s life, they have both online and in-person communication skills to develop thoroughly. The many facets of technology allow for students to be given assignments (i.e. informative essay outline, TOK essay, MLA style outlines) that involve using group chats, shared virtual workspaces, and tools to create media and presentations. Schools, however, have the responsibility of building students’ presentation, teamwork, and leadership skills gradually through practice in person – this is why reducing lecture time in classrooms is so important! Both realms used like this can help students to network and build confidence in their ability to communicate. In effect, they become ready to apply what they know to the world around them.
For solving real-world problems, students require the ability to apply what they learn – an ability refined through practice. Typical examinations and written assignments can be left to be done mostly online; thus, students can focus on completing projects and taking on community work. Generally, the organization of such projects can be done online or in-person, but few will end up with purely digital products, so groups will likely work together in close proximity to complete their tasks. This gives students the opportunity to put their theory to the test, work through processes from beginning to end, and get constructive feedback on their methods and results. Community work also offers students insight into how some organizations operate, as well as how they might improve the world around them. In all, time spent on practical application readies students for the real world. To paraphrase the greats, “In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; in practice, there is.”
Educational institutions have always tended toward the inclusion of the technology of the times. This time it is the update into the information age that is revolutionizing the system. In developing a new approach to education, students will gain from the pairing of IT and physical attendance. Each aspect of learning – mastery, communication, and application – requires this dualistic approach to meet the needs of students today so they can be successful tomorrow.