What does success look like?

I’ve had a few chats with Will Richardson over the last few days on the state (or lack of) change in how we teach. We had a meandering conversation this afternoon that covered in small part:
1. We are not ready for systemic change. The pressure is not yet significant enough for wholesale change (and, for that matter, may never be significant enough to bring about the vision (or lack of it) that many in the edublog community have).
2. Anomalies are building between a) how we teach, b) society, c) information/knowledge, d) students, e) authority/power. These anomalies no longer fit in the current schooling framework.
3. Frameworks, like tools, offer certain affordances (see also Kai Pata’s thoughts and our ensuing discussion)
4. We need a framework (or even narrative) that offers the affordances people require in today’s world (what a vague statement :) ) and a new way to think about education in general.
And that got me thinking. Understanding the theories or thoughts of others is difficult when we see them in their formative stages. But to see the outcome to which a person aspires reveals much, much more. We have Gary Stager critiquing web 2.0 (which is great), Bill Kerr largely agreeing, Tom Hoffman lamenting lack of liberal focus in education, and so on. My question: What does success look like to you? If you were successful in implementing your vision, what would our education system look like?

4 Responses to “What does success look like?”

  1. Ken Carroll says:

    I guess I’m somewhat less pessimistic than you chaps. Success looks like a process.
    I think we’re already seeing the beginnings of change. The fact that this conversation is happening is evidence. The problem is, of course, that it’s not happening anywhere near fast enough.
    Whatever the ‘vision’ as solution is, it can only take the form of a process, rather than and end-state, or a series of directives. The process needs an adequate, but tentative, pedagogical grounding, togther with a a healthy relationship with technology. It will also have to be eclectic and experimental. Admittedly, none of these things are found in abundance in mainstream education at the moment, but there’s a reason for that, and they shouldn’t be beyond the scope of individuals to make choice for themselves. No matter how we look at it, there are no more certainties. I think your own ideas in connectivism are a good start.
    I guess I approach this, not from the perspective of the state/the government/the feds should be doing, but rather from the perspective of autonomous individuals or groups. No government, with its inherent nanny-state attitudes to education, can possibly hope to keep up with the rate of change we’re about to see, let alone legislate it for us all. As with much that the internet touches, decision-making power in education will shift. The democratization everyone talks about will challenge the assumptions of left as well as the right.
    As for the chap who ‘laments’ the lack of liberal focus in education, I say, keep that man out of my classrooms. Who was it that said, ‘where education meets ideology a terrible bullshit is born’?

  2. Pat Parslow says:

    My comment was getting a bit long, so you can find it here : https://redgloo.sse.reading.ac.uk/sir06pnp/weblog/1650.html

  3. People changing the world when they are still in college, or at least trying to.
    Us helping them to do that, and giving them guidance (or curating, etc, etc).
    The main thing technology is is a force-multiplier, that’s been true since the lever.
    And so what I really see a future where we challenge kids to solve real problems, because they are now personally empowered by technology to where they can. I see a future where instead of US News and World Report rankings colleges, even small state ones, list the stunning accomplishments of their students.
    My 9 year old daughter has decided she wants to “write and illustrate children’s books” for a living. She’s set up a blog and started writing and scanning in her stuff. She came downstairs last night and asked how I got videos up — she’d like to do something like the Potter Puppet Pals vids.
    I’d hope in 10 years public education could provide an environment where that approach to life is the norm. And I guess I’d hope in 5 years I’d be able to stop worrying that school would crush that instinct.
    Anyway, that’s how I’d measure success — kids accomplishing things in the real world…at least that’s

  4. Dave Winter says:

    The characteristics of success for me begin with the consideration of change and investigation of what is helping learners. Technology in my mind is making learning easier. If we remain open to change and recognise the anomalies as prompts for considered action we are succeeding. Looking at it the other way the disengaged will accommodate our attempts to succeed providing us with a path from old practices. Be the first to comment at http://www.education-realitycheck.blogspot.com