Welcome ! We are already operating in the future !
We are living in a unique moment in history, accelerating a series of trends motivated by a pandemic, but few sectors are experiencing something as disruptive as the education sector. Before we talk about it, let's take a little trip back in time.
The history of education began in the early days of pre-history and began in an intuitive and natural way, as a way of transmitting knowledge, children learning from their elders through observation, just as animals do. Survival activities such as hunting and fishing were focused on the needs of the moment.
The next phase was in Greece and ancient Rome where the emergence of private property changed relations between men, and social classes and slavery began to appear. In ancient Greece and Rome, free men had a lot of idle time, and in order to occupy it, an institution that we know until today was created: the school. There the citizens acquired knowledge in accordance with the interests of the society in which they lived. They were taught contents such as oratory, rhetoric, philosophy, arts and literature. The learning helped the students to prepare for political life, which was the great motto of Greek-Romanian societies. The school in that period was not for everyone.
In the middle ages the school ceased to be focused on teaching political skills and became strongly influenced by the Catholic Church. Among the contents that were taught were Latin and religious teaching. At this time, a large part of the population is illiterate and the school continues to be for the few, only for the higher levels of society. Continuing on the journey of time, the Enlightenment movement, which moved Europe in the 18th Century, fought theocentrism and advocated that man should be master of himself and make decisions based on reason.The Enlightenment had as its motto "Freedom, Equality and Fraternity", and served as a strong inspiration for the French Revolution In the following decades this statement would influence similar publications in other countries of Europe and Latin America. With civil rights, people from different layers of society would gain citizen status and gain access to school. Knowledge then began to become democratic.
Arriving in the era of the Industrial Revolution it is marked by the shift from artisanal production to machine. As the factories needed qualified labor, expanding the supply of schools to the lower classes met this need. The more traditional classroom configuration we know today, at least for now, with students lined up one after the other, is a remnant of that time, when the factory format began to be replicated by the institutions.
Jumping into the Information Age - also called the Technological Age or the Digital Age - is the post-industrial era marked by the technological advances that began to transform society from the 1980s onwards.
As in all moments of history, the reflexes of what society was experiencing arrived in schools, and technology began to transform education. Educational institutions gradually began to adopt computer laboratories, the Internet made access to knowledge faster than libraries allowed, and the EAd modality advanced and expanded.
This is how we arrived at 4.0 education - it is characterized by the high technology that the industrial sector employs for process automation and the emergence of concepts such as cloud computing.
Education 4.0 brings this reality to schools, focusing the teaching and learning process on skills required by today's market - among them entrepreneurship, mathematics, logic and digital knowledge. The method that values experimentation, practice, collaboration and interdisciplinarity gain prominence. The classroom format begins to be revised, and many models are configured so that the student leaves the role of observer and begins to have a collaborative function or even protagonist within the teaching itself.
The processes within the schools also change, and several tasks begin to be managed by technology. Digital resources are used from the moment the student enters the school and goes through the electronic turnstile, until the moment the institution communicates with his parents by app . All management is done digitally, processes are integrated .
Now the pandemic may have anticipated us another great new revolution, which I am calling the post-Education era 4.0 or 5.0 . The era in which we live the transformation from "paid" to "freemium", hybrids models, democratization of information in terms never seen in history. Renowned universities open access to a series of free courses for everyone. The contents become dynamic, with real time updates, continuous and perennial way, bringing legitimacy to the term so commented and cited nowadays, the lifelong learning. This movement can still make viable and finally introduce immersive technologies as virtual and augmented reality in this sector and can be greatly enhanced with 5g that is arriving in several countries and in a colossal way in 2030 with 6G, which is already in prototype phase in China and South Korea.
The big question is that this revolution seems to move on secular foundations of education making universities and schools have to find ways to renew themselves and meet again. In a recent article, the richest man in the world, Elon Musk spoke in an interview for The Guardian that “schools are not made to learn but to have fun" and that they no longer require diplomas to occupy prominent places in their companies. Besides her, other big techs with the same concept.
Finally, if the schools will lose the sense and will become areas only of coexistence and education will be done in a continuous and autonomous way that is where we are heading, we do not know yet but we will know soon. Normally we look to the future as something subject, distant but when we least expect the destiny reserves us moments and interventions that makes us literally living in this future moment, we just sharpen our senses and expand our power of observation. Ah, and be prepared to operate in it TODAY, welcome to the future!
André Chaves, Future Hacker's co-founder & host