I once dreamed of a world class education. In my dream I saw: knowledgeable, skillful, passionate and inspiring teachers who wanted me to succeed because they saw I shared their passion as well; it had mix of teaching, coaching and mentoring to help me put the “pieces of the puzzle” into useful form and build my own story; it had practical, current and engaging content; a multi-disciplinary and creative approach; I had insightful discussions with other “students” almost daily, we respected each other; it was very affordable so I didn’t have to finance my life away just to attend it; it was flexible, I could attend classes whenever I wanted or whenever my brain was working at its best; and it had videos, stories from real people like me, cases and other multimedia tools to enhance the experience.
To good news? My dream has come true when I hacked my way into ‘self-education’.
“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” Isaac Asimov
The internet has set the environment for self-education like never before. There is a collection of learning blocks available to anyone with a computer and Internet access. “Like a set of Legos, they are fixed pieces that can be reassembled into anything you imagine”, says Anya Kamenetz on “Learning, freedom and the web”, and we can utilise them to manifest our dream educational experience.
Self-education is a subject of our creativity, hence, design is part of the process. We manage the enrolment, we get “accepted”, we select the “textbooks”, we design our own assignments, set deadlines and passing criteria.We take full charge of the process.
Designing for Self-Education starts by asking ourselves where we want it to take us. Then, we need to make an effort to visualise our dream educational as if it was a piece of art. Since you are in full control, make sure it’s a masterpiece. Gather your learning blocks in the same way as if we were assembling paint and brushes. Remix the content, play with it and make it your own. The ultimate goal should be using this experience to solve problems around you.
Solving problems is an important component of self-education. It’s the only way we confirm whether we are learning or not. Remember the old saying: if we are not part of the solution, we are part of the problem. So pick a problem you feel you could tackle and start working your way through it.
Self-education is a sure path to lifelong learning and, as a result, to maturity. Once ‘infected’ by the this ‘virus’, there is no coming back, everything becomes a learning experience. In my opinion, this is the ultimate way of living life, living to evolve.
This post is part of my latest 30 day challenge.
I am on a mission to help people “hack” their way into lifelong learning, so if you have a restless desire to evolve and expand beyond your current capabilities, but feels somehow stuck and have no idea how to start, where to go, who to talk to, please let me know by posting a comment bellow. Also, you may want to subscribe to my RSS or newsletter. I will be writing about ways to “hack learning” and it may be of help to you.
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