Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Bb World Europe 2009 - Day 2 (1/2)

Today was the first day with a full programme of (parallel) sessions. In general I found the presentations a little bit disappointing. Only traditional powerpoint-led lectures, some questions at the end, but no interaction at all. This makes the sessions not very inspiring so far. However, there my hopes are on the guys of Avans who will present tomorrow. They promised to have a highly interactive format in which the audience will be set to work.
This morning started with a keynote by Dirk van Damme from OECD. From a research perspective he focused on issues that determine the context of change. Utilisation of human capital is important factor for (future) success and driver for innovation. We need more diversity to address the heterogeneous demands of the future. However, curricula have not really changed to meet the challenges of the 21st century. Van Damme mentioned two critical issues here:
Issue 1:
Success = being able to appeal to diversifying provision and offering higher added value in an increasingly competitive market. Technology will be part of the answer

Issue 2:
Will Higher Education Institutes (HEI) be able to sustain their role as dominant producers of knowledge, skills and qualifications? HEI exist because they provide institutional arrangements and provide powerful learning environments.

As a threat we see an increasing number of competitors:
• More alternative providers
• Direct skills assessment
• Why is a university grade so important? As a company we can assess them ourselves!

HEI's even may have to face the threat of disappearing. Technology adoption in HEI’s is there, but not into the heart of teaching & learning. In general one may say that the institutional potential for change is underused. Institutes and employees may have a drive for innovation and will bring some change into their organization, but this needs to be recognized and supported. Of critical importance is the institutional commitment to change! For more information and publications of OECD you may want to visit their website.

Later more...

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