We are all more than well-aware by now that for most of humanity, mind-blowing technology and innovation is creating uncertainty, unease, confusion — even fear — but also excitement, awe and hope.
In the areas of training and learning, the feelings are no different. Here is just a small handful of stories:
- In 2009, 14-year-old Taylor Wilson built a working nuclear fusion reactor in his parents’ garage — with the help of YouTube. He later delivered a TED Talk on his experience.
- Michael Salzhauer, a plastic surgeon going by the name of Doctor Miami on social media livestreams his medical procedures and surgeries on Snapchat. Over half a million medical students follow him.
- Bit Source, an eastern Kentucky software company, offers out-of-work coal miners paid training in computer programming and coding, creating revolutionary job opportunities in a region with high unemployment.
These stories stand in stark contrast with the learning experiences most of us had as children and even adults.
There are many factors at play, but one thing is increasingly certain — training is increasingly polymorphic. Most of us were taught in classrooms to memorize facts, but with the internet, shared user-generated content, Serious Games, Moocs, etc., the old methods of learning have changed, along with our concept of knowledge itself.
If the answers are always readily available — literally in our pockets — the challenge today may not be how to know something, but how to best utilize all the available tools to learn to do something.
The topic of modern training is enormous. However, here we look at four major trends that, when converged, are shaping the future of learning.