Learning Societies and the Role of
Teachers
L J Haravu
Outline of talk
√The concept of a knowledge economy and the
characteristics of knowledge as a resource
√The relationship b...
Knowledge Economies
√ ‘For countries in the vanguard of world economy,
the balance between knowledge and resources has
shi...
Knowledge Economies
√ Peter Drucker, an acknowledged
management guru, argues that in the new
economy, knowledge is not jus...
Knowledge Economies
●
The Info revolution has broken down
barriers between economies and
markets
●
Need for business, indu...
What is knowledge?
√ Knowledge and information are not the
same although we speak of these as
though they are synonymous
√...
What is knowledge?
√ Although personal knowledge includes certain
pieces of information and bits of data, it also
contains...
Paradigm shifts
Scientificfoundation Newtonianphysics Quantumphysics
Timeis Monochronic(onethingatatome) Polychronic(Manyt...
Learning and Knowledge
●
Learning can be defined as gaining
knowledge, comprehension or mastery
through experience or stud...
Learning and Knowledge
●
In the twenty first century an illiterate person
is not one who cannot read or write, but one
who...
Learning and Knowledge
●
“According to new growth economics, a
country’s capacity to take advantage of
the Knowledge Econo...
Learning and Knowledge
●
Formal education too needs to be less
about passing on information and focus
on teaching people h...
The Learning Society
●
Donald Schon provided a theoretical
framework linking the experience of living in a
situation of an...
The Learning Society
●
Torsten Husén, another early contributor to the
concept of learning societies: “it would be
necessa...
The Learning Society
●
Husén's vision of a relevant educational system for
Learning Societies include the following:
Educ...
The Learning Society
●
Three key strands in the notion of a learning
society
− The learning society is an educated
society...
The Learning Society
●
Key attribures
 values and fosters habits of lifelong learning
 socially inclusive and ensures th...
Teachers and Learning Societies
●
Teachers should set an example for their
wards by committing themselves to renewing
thei...
Teachers and Learning Societies
●
Experiment with their teaching.
●
Use web-based and multimedia resources
whereever possi...
Teachers and Learning Societies
●
Associate media specialists in developing
innovative learning resources.
●
Collaborate w...
Teachers and Learning Societies
●
Iimportance of early childhood development
− requires that a teacher should not only
pro...
Teachers and Learning Societies
●
Need to teach children to learn for themselves
and from each other in group assignments,...
Teachers and Learning Socities
●
One more area which I have found neglected
in our schools and colleges is communication
s...
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Learning societies

  1. 1. Learning Societies and the Role of Teachers L J Haravu
  2. 2. Outline of talk √The concept of a knowledge economy and the characteristics of knowledge as a resource √The relationship between learning and knowledge √The concept of a learning society and its characteristics √How teachers might help in their own ways in building a learning society
  3. 3. Knowledge Economies √ ‘For countries in the vanguard of world economy, the balance between knowledge and resources has shifted so far towards the former that knowledge has perhaps become the most important factor determining the standard of living – more than land, than tools, than labour. Today’s technologically advanced economies are truly knowledge-based.’ √ Alvin Toffler proclaims knowledge as the source of the highest quality of power and the key to the powershift that lies ahead. √ knowledge is the key to economic power, there is a battle for the control of knowledge and the means of communication.
  4. 4. Knowledge Economies √ Peter Drucker, an acknowledged management guru, argues that in the new economy, knowledge is not just another resource alongside the traditional factors of production – land, labour and capital. – but the only meaningful resource.
  5. 5. Knowledge Economies ● The Info revolution has broken down barriers between economies and markets ● Need for business, industry (educational instns) to be alert to changes in their environment ● Think globally but act locally is becoming the new paradigm for all kinds of organizations
  6. 6. What is knowledge? √ Knowledge and information are not the same although we speak of these as though they are synonymous √ Information alone does not often have the capacity to resolve uncertainty. √ Knowledge gives the capacity to act effectively in order to produce desired outcomes in a complex, uncertain and fast changing environment.
  7. 7. What is knowledge? √ Although personal knowledge includes certain pieces of information and bits of data, it also contains a wealth of experience and memories that are unique to each one of us. These experiences flavour, filter and shape what we know and understand. √ our knowledge is a constantly shifting configuration of memory, context, patterns, associations and relationships. It continuously evolves through constant exchange with our environment.
  8. 8. Paradigm shifts Scientificfoundation Newtonianphysics Quantumphysics Timeis Monochronic(onethingatatome) Polychronic(Manythingsatonce) Weunderstandby Dissectingintoparts Seeingintermsofthewhole Informationis Ultimatelyknowable Infinite,unbounded Growthis Linear,managed Organic,chaotic Managingmeans Control,predictability Insightandparticipation Workersare Specialized,segmented Multi-faceted,alwayslearning Motivationisfrom External forcesandinfluence Intrinsiccreativity Knowledgeis Individual Collective Organizationis Bydesign Emergent Lifethriveson Competition Cooperation Changeis Somethingtoworry about Allthereis
  9. 9. Learning and Knowledge ● Learning can be defined as gaining knowledge, comprehension or mastery through experience or study. ● Learning by individuals, organizations, including educational institutions is vital to their continued well-being, survival, and growth in the Knowledge era.
  10. 10. Learning and Knowledge ● In the twenty first century an illiterate person is not one who cannot read or write, but one who will not learn, unlearn and relearn”. ● Equally true of organizations ● Many organizations are seeking to become learning organizations as this is the only way they can hope to remain relevant, competent and competitive in a fast changing world.
  11. 11. Learning and Knowledge ● “According to new growth economics, a country’s capacity to take advantage of the Knowledge Economy depends on how quickly it can become a ‘learning economy’. Learning means not only using new technologies to access global knowledge, it also means using them to communicate with other people about innovation. In the ‘Learning Economy’ individuals, firms and countries will be able to create wealth in proportion to their capacity to learn and share innovation”.
  12. 12. Learning and Knowledge ● Formal education too needs to be less about passing on information and focus on teaching people how to learn”. ● An overarching philosophy, policies and support systems are needed for people to lean on. ● Such a support system has been called the Learning Society.
  13. 13. The Learning Society ● Donald Schon provided a theoretical framework linking the experience of living in a situation of an increasing change with the need for learning. ● society and all of its institutions are in continuous processes of transformation. We cannot expect new stable states that will endure for our own lifetimes. ● We must learn to understand, guide, influence and manage these transformations. ● In other words, we must be able not only to transform our institutions, in response to changing situations and requirements; we must invent and develop institutions which are ‘learning systems’
  14. 14. The Learning Society ● Torsten Husén, another early contributor to the concept of learning societies: “it would be necessary for states to become 'learning societies' - where knowledge and information lay at the heart of their activities”.
  15. 15. The Learning Society ● Husén's vision of a relevant educational system for Learning Societies include the following: Education is going to be a lifelong process. No fixed points of entry and 'cut-off' exits. More a continuous process within formal education and in its role within other functions of life. Will take on a more informal character as it becomes accessible to more and more individuals. In addition to 'learning centers', facilities will be provided for learning at home and at the workplace To an ever-increasing extent, the education system will become dependent on supporting systems to produce teaching aids, systems of information processing and multi-media instructional materials.
  16. 16. The Learning Society ● Three key strands in the notion of a learning society − The learning society is an educated society, committed to active citizenship, liberal democracy and equal opportunities. This supports lifelong learning. − A learning society is a learning market, enabling institutions to provide services for individuals as a condition for supporting the competitiveness of the economy. − Learners adopt a learning approach to life, drawing on a wide range of resources to enable them to support their lifestyle practices.
  17. 17. The Learning Society ● Key attribures  values and fosters habits of lifelong learning  socially inclusive and ensures that all of its members are part of its learning communitie  It recognizes the importance of early-childhood development as part of lifelong learning and develops organized ways of enhancing the development of all children.  It views information technologies, including new interactive, multimedia technologies, as tools for enriching learning
  18. 18. Teachers and Learning Societies ● Teachers should set an example for their wards by committing themselves to renewing their own knowledge in an ongoing manner. ● Take special courses on occasion but more importantly by self-analysis and by being conscious of the need to improve their skills as teachers. Seek and use student feedback intelligently. ● Take responsibility for self-learning. Don't think that the institution alone should take the initiative.
  19. 19. Teachers and Learning Societies ● Experiment with their teaching. ● Use web-based and multimedia resources whereever possible. ● If a picture is worth a thousand words, an animated film or multimedia presentation is worth a thousand pictures.
  20. 20. Teachers and Learning Societies ● Associate media specialists in developing innovative learning resources. ● Collaborate with multimedia specialists to develop such resources. ● AVK could set up a media lab to develop some of these resources and in fact make these available on the web site for use by students and teachers.
  21. 21. Teachers and Learning Societies ● Iimportance of early childhood development − requires that a teacher should not only provide curricular instruction but also inspire children to see the subtleties and nuances of a subject. These have a lasting impact on children. − not to curb or curtail the natural creativity of children. − emphasis on completing the syllabus and preparing the children for examinations does inhibit the creativity of children.
  22. 22. Teachers and Learning Societies ● Need to teach children to learn for themselves and from each other in group assignments, is I think equally important. ● Learning to learn is I think as important as instruction. ● in India students expect to be spoon fed even in post-graduate courses. They are not encouraged to think for themselves. ● Problem solving skills and lateral thinking will become important in the 21st century. These are not in the syllabuses of schools and colleges. How to inculcate problem-solving skills is a challenge that will be interesting to work on.
  23. 23. Teachers and Learning Socities ● One more area which I have found neglected in our schools and colleges is communication skills, inter-personal, written and oral including public speaking. Many of our college and university students sorely lack good communication skills.
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