We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Salman Khan talk at TED 2011

29th May 2011

Watch it. That’s an order.

The future of education = individualized instruction + world-class presentation of information.

In 1996 there was a book, The Winner-Take-All Society, which explored the supposition that a key aspect of the modern world was that technology made the best performances in any human activity available to almost everybody, so nobody had to put up with crappy local performances any more. Who’s going to spend money on Benny and the Whiz-Tones when Michael Jackson is just a push-button away? Who’s going to suffer through an amateur local theater performance when the Royal Shakespeare Company is on a disk that cost less than a meal at McDonalds?

Push this out to education: All of a sudden, anybody with an internet connection can watch world-class teachers presenting knowledge in a way to which only rich kids enrolled at world-class universities used to have access.

… And the teachers would write and say, ‘We’ve used your videos to flip the classroom. You’ve given the lectures. So now what we do …’ — and this could actually happen in every classroom in America tomorrow — ‘… what I do is, I assign the lectures for homework, and what used to be homework, I now have the students doing in the classroom.’

This is huge, and will only get more and more huge.

One Response to “Salman Khan talk at TED 2011”

  1. RealRick Says:

    Improving education is one thing; improving the education system is another. The system is only peripherally involved with educating youth. It has a LOT to do with politics and spending tax money. Hence, new and improved ideas will not be incorporated until those running the show figure out how they can profit from them.