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Monday, August 3, 2015

Higher Education-When It All Changes!

Higher Education has been living by tradition dating back hundreds of years. That tradition still carries forward today and will eventually make its way into newer mediums of knowledge. Change comes with disruption causing society to rethink the purpose and point of getting a degree.

I am a product of an older world and system where chalkboards were common in school and personal computers were seeing their first light.  Some of the classrooms I attended didn't have air conditioning and everyone got hard copy books. Old maps were pulled down to share, even if you couldn't see them from the back of the class.

Likewise, I am also a product of large libraries that contained a wealth of knowledge stacked up to the walls. I could sit for hours and look through book after book. I could smell the aging of the paper, see the rips, rubs and blemishes. An entire library can  now sit in my cell phone.

 These changes are surface changes as that process of learning and developing continues on despite the medium people use. Brighter minds will still seek information and understanding while those who don't care won't frequent a library or kindle anyway. People find ways of getting what they need and want.

We shouldn't be afraid of changes in higher education. The very nature of change is positive when more people have access to education as a cheaper price through virtual means. We must learn to blend old and new traditions together to create something new that works for the next generation. To each its own. 

Society will negotiate the form and manner of higher education through the legislative process. The change will be reflective of elected officials who will think about their own education and with any luck also consider what the generation in the cradle now will need. They will compare U.S. education market  with those overseas and will determine if innovation or tradition should take precedence; or something in between.

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