The shift from teacher-led to media-rich, learner-centered instruction may well be forced upon the American education system in the upcoming years.  In case one hasn’t been paying attention, there are big changes on the horizon for education in this country that will result in opportunities for well-designed, media-rich on-line courseware. 

We all know that a significant trend in education today is toward competency and accountability.  Clearly, competency-based on-line courseware, with integrated measuring capabilities, will be recognized and used as one of the tools for reaching those goals.

Another change is the impending fall of the wall between business and education.  That wall has separated the two sectors for many years, but the pressure of global economic competition is leading many to plan for that barrier’s demise.  The historical separation lies between business and that sector of the educational system responsible for the nearly 75% of high school students who are not likely to earn a college baccalaureate degree.  These students eventually comprise the majority of America’s front-line workforce, and the prosperity of this country depends on them.

Compared to other countries, American front-line workers lag far behind in the sophisticated skills needed for a country to compete internationally:  communications, math, science, conceptual thinking, flexibility, responsiveness, and technological expertise.  These are skills that most front-line workers in many competitive industrialized nations possess — to the ultimate economic benefit of their individual countries. 

 What these other nations have learned about education and the workforce has been translated into comprehensive public education programs for the non-college-bound student.  These programs all but obliterate the conventional lines between education and training.

In the United States, however, the educational system has changed little from that of fifty or more years ago, when most workers’ jobs were de-skilled and required little thinking.  That concept may have been appropriate for the price-driven mass-production economy in the America of the 1950s.  People left school, then, knowing all they’d ever need to know, without acquiring the skills needed to absorb new information or continue with their learning.

 Although the world economic reality has changed greatly since then, neither American education nor most American businesses have kept pace.  Mass production and a price-driven economy are long gone, but too many organizations continue to segregate work into non-thinking and thinking jobs.

The new truth is that in order to perform on an international level, front-line workers have to think. 

It should be obvious that a new “learning bridge” must be built — and, it must be consistent with the prevalent learning culture where, today, most of us get our information from smartphones, tablets, computers and television.  Media-rich e-Learning is destined to become one of the most effective means to that end.

More on Wednesday  –  –  –

   — Bill Walton, co-Founder, ITC Learning

       September 27, 2017  (Mondays & Wednesdays)


 (This is a personal blog.  Any views or opinions represented in this blog are personal and belong solely to the blog owner,, an independent consultant.  They do not represent those of people, institutions or organizations that the owner may or may not be associated with in a professional or personal capacity.)