I must laugh when I think of the times I viewed the television program, “Flash Gordon, inch as he putted through outer space in the make-believe space ship, talking in the make-believe wireless radio, and dressed in his make-believe space suit. Nicely, I’m not laughing anymore. Nowadays we have shuttled astronauts into space, have men living in a Space Train station, have space suites that take your temperature and gauge your heartrate, and wireless communication devices that send pictures to Planet Earth. Considerably fetched from reality? Not anymore. As we speak, the future is starring us hard, waiting to see how we will promote her in the next 5-10 years.
Exactly how did science-fiction become reality in the last 50 years? Let’s consider one aspect of innovation: the learning environment – posting secondary education. Why post secondary education, you may ask? As post secondary education population increases, programs to accommodate students will develop into course that affords students the freedom to create and design systems these people toy with on a daily basis. Are there risks involved in this adaptation process? There are risks involved when change happens, and leadership should be aware of how to diplomatically confront the risk areas that could slow down progress. Some of the risks that could be came across due to change are:
o Systems risks
o Subsystem risks
o Financial/economic risks
o Societal/Cultural risks
If communication between systems, subsystems, people, and cultures within the organizational environment has established a powerful communication system, risks factors is going to be at a minimum as long as the creative groups are honest and upfront about their reservations to change.
Let’s check out the future through ‘futureoculers’ and see how the universe of learning can be brought into the present. I want to introduce for you five (5) key trends that I believe affect the current learning environment, can create change, and renovate the particular perspective of learners and teachers for students of the future. These tendencies could be the key in creating a new viewpoint in post secondary education to have an institution. The key trends are:
um Competitive classroom learning environments : campus on-site/online/distant
o Increase in technical tools
o Teaching/learning environments-more practical
o Global expansion capability-internal plus external
o Student input in the creative learning process
Before the five (5) key tendencies are defined, there needs to be a good acknowledgement of how the trends is going to be supported and regulated through a modifying environment. According to de Kluyver, plus Pearce, II, having the right systems and processes/subsystems enhances organizational effectiveness and facilitates coping with change. Out of allignment systems and processes can be a powerful drag on an organization’s ability to adapt. Therefore , check what effect, in case any, current systems and processes are likely to have on a company’s capability to implement a particular strategy is well advised. Support systems such as a provider’s planning, budgeting, accounting, information plus reward and incentive systems could be critical to successful strategy execution. Although they do not by themselves define the sustainable competitive advantage, superior assistance systems help a company adapt faster and effectively to changing specifications. A well-designed planning system helps to ensure that planning is an orderly process, gets the right amount of attention by the right executives, and has a balanced external and internal focus. Budgeting and marketing systems are valuable in offering accurate historical data, setting standards and targets, and defining procedures of performance. A state-of-the-art details system supports all other corporate techniques, and it facilitates analysis as well as external and internal communications. Finally, a properly designed prize and incentive system is key to creating energy through motivation and commitment. A process (or subsystem) is an organized way of doing things. Processes can be formal or informal; they specify organization roles and relationships, and they also can facilitate or obstruct modification. Some processes or subsystems look beyond immediate issues of implementation to an explicit focus on developing a more powerful capacity for adapting to change. Processes/subsystems targeted at creating a learning organization and at fostering continuous improvement are good examples. For example, processes or subsystems are practical and maintain the operation of the system; the system may be Student Services and the subsystem may be the Financial Aid office or even Admissions. Subsystems can be more detailed in relation to office operations, which involves employee positions and their culture; monetary advisors, academic advisors, guidance advisors. These operations are functions carried out on the human level and could possess a positive or negative impact within the development of key trends. If workers are valued and rewarded for dedication and service, the outcome is going to be responsible, committed employees for the success of their subsystem.
Every navigator needs a map, a plan, the driver to give direction to for a successful trip. In this case, the driver is definitely several elements:
o Service honesty, reputation
o Affordability with an open door concept
Hughes and Beatty relate drivers as Strategic motorists; those relatively few determinants associated with sustainable competitive advantage for a particular organization in a particular industry or competitive environment (also called aspects of competitive success, key achievement factors, key value propositions). The reason behind identifying a relatively small number of strategic drivers for an organization is primarily to ensure that people become focused about what design of inherently limited investments will give the greatest strategic leverage and competing advantage. Drivers can change over time, or maybe the relative emphasis on those drivers can transform, as an organization satisfies its important driver. In the case of post secondary education, drivers help measure success rates in the area of course completion ratio, student retention, and transfer acceptance into an university and/or the successful employment of students. Because change is so uncontrolled in education, it is wise with regard to leadership to anticipate change plus develop a spirit of foresight maintain with global trends.
Drivers will help identify the integrity of external and internal functions of systems and subsystems, as mentioned previously, by identifying enterprise types that feed the drivers’ success. They are:
o Clientele Industry – external Market – feeder high schools, cultural and socio-economic demographic and geographic populations
– Competitors – local and on-line educational systems
– Nature associated with Industry – promote a learning community
– Governmental influences – licensed curriculum programs supported by local, state, and federal funds
– Economic and social influences – job market, employers, outreach applications
o College Planning and Environment – internal
– Capacity – Open door environment
– Products and services – high demand curriculum programs that will meet, local, state, and federal government high demand employment needs
– Market position – Promote on plus off-campus activities that attract clients
– Customers – traditional and non-traditional credit and non-credit students
– Systems, processes, and structures – trained staff and state-of-the art technical systems
– Command – integrity-driven, compassionate leadership groups
– Organizational culture – promote on-campus activities promoting an aggressive environment for students
According to Hughes and Beatty, these functions may assimilate into the Vision, Mission, and Values statements to define the key strategic drivers for developing profitable environments.
Navigating Towards a Location
With the recognition of systems, subsystems, and drivers, we can see our destination in the distance and their worth in building a foundation to support the five key trends. The five (5) key trends will help determine strategic thinking in a global viewpoint; the understanding of futuristic thinking that includes: risk taking, imagination, creativity, conversation among leadership, and a perspective of how the future can fit into today’s agenda. The five (5) key developments are:
1 . Competitive Classroom Learning Environments – campus on-site/online/distant
Among the major attractions in education nowadays is to accommodate a student at every level: academically, financially, and socially. These types of three environments are the mainstream associated with why one school is selected over another school. Today there exists a change in tide. Students who also once competed for seats within post secondary schools are becoming the valued asset as post secondary schools compete between each other intended for students. High schools are no longer the only feeder into colleges. Today, students are coming from home schools, career schools, charter schools, high risk institutions, private schools, religious schools, work environments, and ATB tested conditions. So , how can the educational system attract students and keep them motivated in an interactive learning environment they can grow in? Wacker and Taylor writes that the story of every excellent enterprise begins with the delivery of a promise, and every product a great enterprise makes is nothing but an creature of the truth of that promise. So what great enterprise can be created to bring in new students? By creating learning/teaching environments, post secondary schools can prepare students to meet the demands of everyday life and their lifetime in the community. Schools can consider incorporating a learning model to enable professors and/or community leaders/entrepreneurs to group teach in the classroom/online environment. Team Teaching will contribute valuable views into the learning environment, as well as, give students the working community’s real-time perspective. In an excerpt from “The University at the Millennium: The Glion Declaration” (1998) quoted by Open H. T. Rhodes, President Emeritus of Cornell University, for the Louisiana State Board of Regents statement, Dr . Rhodes wrote that universities are learning communities, created and supported because of the need of learners to learn, the benefit to scholars of intellectual community, and the importance to society of new knowledge, educated management, informed citizens, expert professional abilities and training, and individual certification and accreditation. Those functions remain distinctive, essential contributions to culture; they form the basis of an unsaid social compact, by which, in exchange for that effective and responsible provision of these services, the public supports the university or college, contributes to its finance, accepts the professional judgment and scholarly accreditation, and grants it an unique level of institutional autonomy and scholarly independence. To experience education is learning, in order to exercise knowledge is freedom, and also to combine them is wisdom.
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