Here’s a cool idea. Students will have the power to build their own technical certification from an a la carte menu. We know that today’s student lives the ‘Spotified’ life every day. They choose which music, news, and food they consume with precision. So why should education be any different. I foresee many students making their way successfully in this same manner. This may be a complement to the typical college degree or even a replacement for those that can’t afford 4 years of tuition. Currently a degree is like a vinyl record where you are forced to pay for the entire album and get 2 good songs and 8 so-so songs that you want to skip. I’m confident that industry needs, financial forces, and EdTech innovations are going to offer some incredible pathways to change the current ‘vinyl’ education paradigm.
Examples of agile education selection
- AWS certificate in cloud architecture
- Bootcamp GIS certificate with SME instructors promoting a career in GIS
- Coursera technical certificates
- LinkedIn learning certificates in many business areas
- Bootcamp Digital certificate in digital marketing
This is just a sample of platforms that are quickly curating content that is very applied and industry driven. Compare this to the Higher-Ed model of content development which often takes 2-3 years to launch a class. The result is content that’s more general in nature having a longer lifespan. So it’s evident that students will gravitate towards the more nimble sources of tech knowledge. An example being Coursera having sales up by over 500% with a pandemic aided audience.
GIS Course catalog – Bootcamp GIS
Higher-Ed and industry partnerships
A report by GSV Ventures says that digital learning will more than double to a $1T industry worldwide over the next 6 years. This means lots of people jumping into the game and creating educational content offered as microcredentials in higher education. Schools may create some of this content themselves. However the majority of it will be done commercially because of better agility. This will promote many more private sector partnerships that will follow the Spotified education model. Here is a ranking of certificate programs that you can use as a reference if you are considering obtaining a certificate.
The horizon will be filled with campus networks
Eventually the campus footprint will be replaced by a campus network. Then colleges will join together with other colleges and private content providers to offer a collective of thought leaders and courses. This will appeal to the younger consumer so that they can make their degree more student and industry driven. Both students and private education platforms will drive this pressure until the first education collective establishes itself. And once that happens, all others will need to rethink their business model to allow for their own ‘spotified education channel’ else they may go the route of Tower Records and Blockbuster.