Self Directed Learning May be THE most important skill for learners!

A friend of mine is just starting to teach online. If we believe the stats of Christensen et al in Disrupting Class then within
the next 10-15 years over 50% of all education will go on online.
Therefore her comment today that her undergraduates are suffering
because they are not self directed learners and that they have to be
online strikes home.

In Bahrain last year at the Education Project critical thinking skills and global awareness were touted as the critical skills.

What are your thoughts?

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I am really excited by your post Jeff. I facilitate an international conversation which I hope leads to new designs for education. In our first year, after I crunched all our conversations I concluded that everything was revolving around two continuum: student or teacher driven curricula , and student or teacher driven process. If we put those on a 2x2 matrix we have what I feel is the essential question that no one is asking: How do we help our children thrive in the world they will inherit? and When do we trust them to take the lead and we facilitate for them only what they cannot do on their own?

If you are interested check out our site at we are just now starting new teams of discussion. People host three meetings - discuss the research and ideas (on our site and others) and then add their ideas to the mix. If enough people do this from a wide enough swatch of our earth we may just see our ways through the backlog of our own education enough to come up with a breakthrough for our kids.
I absolutely agree with you. And I think we need to start with our early youngsters.

Passion for learning, fostering inquiry, encouraging productive thinking, cheering inner motivation and teaching for understanding are all part of the foundation for self directed learning.

I think as educators, we need to reflect deeply about our practice.

I wonder what is being done in classrooms worldwide.
Hi Ana Maria - perhaps you would be interested in working with our international community at www.futureofeducationprojectnet ? We are recruiting team leaders who will host three meetings in their community to discuss their local education, using the research on the site as stepping off places for their ideas. Then after each meeting the team leader posts or has me post their updates to our site - thus adding to the world's conversations. My job is to facilitate the whole and once a year write an update on findings - hoping that we begin to see new ideas peculate and grow.

We ask, "What do our children need in order to thrive in the world they will inherit? A world we cannot imagine? The second question is of course - how can we organize their learning so they will be well prepared?


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