My thanks to a friend for causing me to further reflect on this article: “Can computers ever replace the classroom?” [Beard]


From DSC:
I’d like to thank Mr. Eric Osterberg — a fraternity brother and friend of mine — for sending me the following article. I wrote back to him. After thanking Eric for the article, I said:

Such an article makes me reflect on things — which is always a good thing for me to try to see my blindspots and/or to think about the good and bad of things. Technologies are becoming more powerful and integrated into our lives — for better at times and for worse at other times.

I’m wondering how the legal realm can assist and/or help create a positive future for societies throughout the globe…any thoughts?


Can computers ever replace the classroom? — from theguardian.com by Alex Beard
With 850 million children worldwide shut out of schools, tech evangelists claim now is the time for AI education. But as the technology’s power grows, so too do the dangers that come with it. 

Excerpts:

But it’s in China, where President Xi Jinping has called for the nation to lead the world in AI innovation by 2030, that the fastest progress is being made. In 2018 alone, Li told me, 60 new AI companies entered China’s private education market. Squirrel AI is part of this new generation of education start-ups. The company has already enrolled 2 million student users, opened 2,600 learning centres in 700 cities across China, and raised $150m from investors.

The supposed AI education revolution is not here yet, and it is likely that the majority of projects will collapse under the weight of their own hype.

The point, in short, is that AI doesn’t have to match the general intelligence of humans to be useful – or indeed powerful. This is both the promise of AI, and the danger it poses.

It was a reminder that Squirrel AI’s platform, like those of its competitors worldwide, doesn’t have to be better than the best human teachers – to improve people’s lives, it just needs to be good enough, at the right price, to supplement what we’ve got. The problem is that it is hard to see technology companies stopping there. For better and worse, their ambitions are bigger. “We could make a lot of geniuses,” Li told me.

 

From DSC:
Normally I don’t advertise or “plug” where I work, but as our society is in serious need of increasing Access to Justice (#A2J) & promoting diversity w/in the legal realm, I need to post this video.

 
 

Play is disappearing from kindergarten. It’s hurting kids. — from edsurge.com by  Joe Martin

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

In an increasing number of schools, teachers of very young students are pressured to pack every moment of the day with structured, academically rigorous tasks. One recent whitepaper linked the practice to preparing kids for the long road of schooling ahead, in which progress is measured through standardized testing starting in third grade.

Friedrich Froebel, a pedagogue of modern education, coined the term “kindergarten” in 1840 after recognizing the importance of play in the development of young children. Inspired by the idea of a garden, he designed a classroom where the teacher presented children with objects, which they were allowed to play with in any way they could imagine. When they lost interest in one object, they would be presented with a new one to spark curiosity and creativity. Children were encouraged to grow and flourish in this free form, play-based environment.

From DSC:
Given that we are all into a lifelong learning situation now, I vote for more importance being placed on whether someone enjoyed their learning experience. That said, I know there is struggle in learning…and learning in the struggle. But we focus so much on grades and standardized testing. This robs the joy from the teaching and learning environment — for the teachers as well as for the kids.

Also see:

 

Notes from Stewart Hase’s keynote (Feb 2020) — with thanks to Dr. Lisa Marie Blaschke in Germany for her Tweet on this

  • The commodification of education – turns out sausages
    or
  • Are we creating more Greta Thunbergs?

Creating learning experiences where people are not sausages. Policymakers don’t get it. Practitioners do.

~11:00 mark –> Learner agency; have control over what they can learn about (inserted graphic from DSC below)

Heutagogy (self-determined learning)

  • …the learner is a partner (agent) in designing and realizing their own learning (Hase & Kenyon, 2000)

PAH continuum – Pedagogy –> Andragogy –>  Heutagogy

Hobby – learned to do it but didn’t go to school for it. How did you go about learning it?

  • Listened to radio, watched YouTube videos, watched other people, trial and error, repeated activity, conversations/reflections/group learning, read books, break things down into smaller parts, seek out a mentor, exploring, testing hypothesis, fail, get stuck and find a way through

Kids know how to do heutagogy – very natural; self-determined learning.

~21:45 To what extent do we incorporate heutagogy into our classrooms?

  • Context and experience – the neurons you bring to the learning table
  • Competence and capability
  • Negotiated learning; let the learner contextualize stuff for you
  • Experiential learning
  • Flexible assessment
  • Chunking the learning
  • Chunk the assessment
  • Flipped classroom
  • Project-based learning

The learning leader: New skills

  • Happy with ambiguity – have to give up control and power
  • Have to trust people
  • Relationship oriented
  • Process not content oriented
  • Coach and guide
  • Scientist
  • Facilitator
 

From DSC:
The items below are meant for those involved with digital transformation, developing strategy, and keeping one’s organization thriving into the future.


Strategy in the Digital Revolution with Ryan McManus — from dukece.com; with thanks to Laura Goodrich for this resource out on Twitter

Description of webinar:
Today, every business is focused on digital transformation, yet most organizations are struggling to realize value from their efforts and investments. Less than 20% of business leaders believe their digital transformation efforts have been successful. With unprecedented access to data and technology, how is it that firms and their leaders are experiencing such disappointing results?

At the root of the problem is the disconnect between how leaders understand strategy and the new rules of the digital revolution. Most leaders haven’t been taught how to think about a world that is very different from the one which gave rise to popular strategic concepts, and as a result, they apply outdated strategy models and thinking to the new world, trying to squeeze the competitive realities of the digital revolution into linear, analog strategic planning concepts.

In this complimentary on-demand webinar, Ryan McManus, lecturer at Columbia University Business School and Duke Corporate Education, discusses the New Strategy Playbook, including:

  • The current state and evolution of the digital revolution, and what’s next
  • The four levels of digital strategy: how you can adapt your approach to win
  • Why traditional approaches to strategy have reached their limits
  • Implications for leadership development

Example slides:

Also see:

http://dialoguereview.com/how-to-think-strategically-in-2020/

 

It is high time to reform the rules that govern the practice of law — from legalservicestoday.com by Ralph Baxter

Excerpt:

Current regulations create a closed system
The current regulatory model has created a closed legal services system. It limits who can participate in legal services in two fundamental ways.

First, only those who undergo the time and expense of law school and become licensed as “lawyers” are permitted to deliver legal services. It is a crime for anyone to do work that falls within the deliberately vague definition of “the practice of law” unless they have a lawyer license.

Second, only lawyers are permitted to participate in the financial rewards of a law firm. Investment by others is forbidden, as is sharing profits within a law firm with personnel who are not lawyers.

The consequences of these limitations are clear and profound. The first limitation causes the cost of legal service to be much higher than it otherwise would be; it also causes the law firm workforce to have less diverse backgrounds (as other businesses have) resulting in less creativity and agility.

The second limitation limits the capital law firms can raise, which, in turn, makes it harder for them to invest in new processes and technologies. The most successful firms in this closed system command high enough fees that they can generate their own capital. The majority of firms, however, would benefit from greater access to capital. This is particularly acute for firms which serve individuals and small businesses; in these practices the economic stakes of matters are relatively small, warranting lower fees, making the need for outside capital even greater.

Also see:

 

ABA passes access to justice measure after opposition fades — from news.bloomberglaw.com by Sam Skolnik

  • New York State Bar Association president lauds “powerfully important moment”
  • Vote followed several days of sometimes tense negotiations

Excerpt:

The American Bar Association passed a resolution encouraging state bars to explore innovative approaches to access to justice by voice vote on Monday, after several days of behind-the-scenes negotiations during which its passage seemed unclear.

Proponents of Resolution 115 prevailed in the House of Delegates vote during the ABA midyear meeting in Austin, Texas, in part because they were willing to adjust the proposal’s language to make it more palatable to detractors who had been concerned about its possible impact on legal industry independence. The House of Delegates is the policy-making arm of the ABA, composed of nearly 600 members, two-thirds of whom represent state, local, and specialty-focused bar groups.

Also see:

 

BIGLAW 2040: What will happen when Gen Z is in charge? — from law360.com by Natalie Rodriguez

Excerpts:

The opportunities that BigLaw has begun offering associates to spend months-long stints working out of international offices will evolve from rare resume brags to almost standard career milestones for those interested in leadership positions.

“If you don’t have global experience, you’re not becoming a CEO anymore, and that’s going to be true of becoming a managing partner. If you want to be a global business, you’re going to have to understand the world,” Wilkins said.

The legal leaders of 2040 will also have to expand their circle — think data technicians, cybersecurity professionals, chief knowledge officers, legal tech and artificial intelligence systems engineers, all of whom are going to play much larger roles in the BigLaw ecosystem in the next few decades.

Addendum on 2/11/20:

The Skills Every Future Lawyer Needs — from law360.com by Erin Coe

Excerpt:

To provide those outcomes and solutions, many lawyers of the future will be responsible for building the systems that replace the old ways of working.

They will become legal knowledge engineers, legal risk managers, legal systems analysts, legal design thinkers and legal technologists, and they will be the ones solving clients’ problems, not through one-on-one advice, but through technology-delivered solutions, according to Susskind.

The challenge for existing lawyers is whether they are prepared over the next 20 years to retrain themselves for these new roles.

 

 

From DSC:
By not listening/taking action nearly enough through the last several decades, the backlash continues to build against colleges and universities — institutions of traditional higher education who didn’t take the rise in tuition seriously. Students graduated and left campus, and the invisible gorillas of debt being placed on students’ backs weren’t acknowledged — nor were they fought against — nearly enough. Instead, the gorillas just kept getting bigger and bigger. 

Year after year, I tried to fight this trend and raise awareness of it…only to see the majority of institutions of traditional higher education do absolutely nothing. Then, as the backlash started to build, the boards and the administrations across the country began priding themselves on how their percentage increases were amongst the smallest in the area/state/nation. They should have found ways to decrease their tuition, but they didn’t. Instead, they resorted to playing games with discounts while their “retail values” kept going up and up.

The time’s coming when they will pay the piper for having done this. Just like what happened to the oil companies and to the car/truck manufactures who made megabucks (for the time being) when their vehicles kept getting bigger and bigger and when the price of oil was high. What happened? The end result was that they shot themselves in the foot. These days, Tesla — with their electric cars — is now the most valuable car company in America.

Within the realm of education…when effective, cheaper alternatives come along that still get people hired, you better look out traditional institutions of higher education. You didn’t listen. It happened on your watch. And speaking of watches, the next major one could be you watching more of your institutions close while watching your students walk out the door to pursue other, far less expensive alternatives.


Follow up comments:
I realize this is a broad swath and isn’t true for several institutions who have been fighting the fight. For example, my current employer — the WMU-Cooley Law School is reducing their tuition by 21% this fall and other institutions have reduced their tuition as well or found ways to honor “Promise” types of programs. Other institutions have done the market research and are offering more relevant, up-to-date curricula. (Don’t worry those of you who work within the liberal arts, I still support and believe in you. But we didn’t do a good enough balancing act between offering liberal arts programs and developing the needed skillsets to help students pay off those ever-growing gorillas of debt.)

The fact was that too often, those invisible gorillas of debt went unnoticed by many within higher education. And it wasn’t just the boards, administrators, presidents, and provosts out there. In fact, the full-time, tenured faculty members taught what they wanted to teach and were furious at those who dared assert that higher education was a business. (Watch a college football game on the major networks last fall? Have you seen the size of research institutions’ intellectual property-based revenues? We could go on and on.) 

Anyway, what tenured faculty members offered didn’t align with what the market needed and was calling for. They offered what was in their best interests, not the students’ best interests.

 

The Future of Lawyers: Legal Tech, AI, Big Data And Online Courts — from forbes.com by Bernard Marr

Excerpts:

In his brand new book Online Courts and the Future of Justice, Richard argues that technology is going to bring about a fascinating decade of change in the legal sector and transform our court system. Although automating our old ways of working plays a part in this, even more, critical is that artificial intelligence and technology will help give more individuals access to justice.

The first generation is the idea that people who use the court system submit evidence and arguments to the judge online or through some form of electronic communication.

The second generation of using technology to transform the legal system would be what Richard calls “outcome thinking” to use technology to help solve disputes without requiring lawyers or the traditional court system.

Some of the biggest obstacles to an online court system are the political will to bring about such a transformation, the support of judges and lawyers, funding, as well as the method we’d apply. For example, decisions will need to be made whether the online system would be used for only certain cases or situations.

Ultimately, we have a grave access-to-justice problem. Technology can help improve our outcomes and give people a way to resolve public disputes in ways that previously weren’t possible. While this transformation might not solve all the struggles with the legal system or the access-to-justice issue, it can offer a dramatic improvement.

 

Stepping Back from the Cliff: Facing New Realities of Changing Student Demographics — from evoLLLution.com by Jim Shaeffer
Most universities that plan to stick to the status quo and serve exclusively traditional learners are facing a cliff. CE divisions can help their institutions avoid a potential drop, but only if they’re empowered.

Excerpt:

Demographics of students enrolling at colleges and universities are evolving. And students’ expectations are evolving as well. As the numbers of 18-22 year olds fresh out of high school drop, the recruitment of non-traditional students is becoming more important than ever. In this interview, James Shaeffer discusses the role continuing education (CE) departments can play as drivers of innovation and reflects on how CE leaders can help their main campus colleagues embrace transformational change.

Addendum on 1/4/20:

 

Using a Research-Based Approach – It’s Up to Us  — from wcetfrontiers.org by Andria Schwegler

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

This discrepancy suggests that perceptions are heavily influenced by idiosyncratic, personal experiences instead of by research.

Nearly a decade ago, a meta-analysis of studies comparing student learning in online, blended, and face-to-face contexts revealed no significant differences in learning across course modality (Means, Toyama, Murphy, Bakia, & Jones, 2010). Today, a growing body of research corroborates no significant differences exist (National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advancements, 2019). That some faculty attitudes are not aligned with this information suggests that concerns regarding course delivery are confounded with beliefs about course modality. Leveraging existing research on teaching and learning and conducting new research to address gaps can clarify how to address concerns with course delivery to facilitate students’ ability to meet learning outcomes instead of assuming course modality is the problem.

 

 

The 10 vital skills you will need for the future of work — from Bernard Marr

Excerpt:

Active learning with a growth mindset
Anyone in the future of work needs to actively learn and grow. A person with a growth mindset understands that their abilities and intelligence can be developed and they know their effort to build skills will result in higher achievement. They will, therefore, take on challenges, learn from mistakes and actively seek new knowledge.

Start by adopting a commitment to lifelong learning so you can acquire the skills you will need to succeed in the future workplace.

 

Redefining Norms Critical to Sustained Relevance in the Changing Postsecondary Environment — from evolllution.com by Hunt Lambert
Sticking to the status quo will end in disaster for most postsecondary institutions. To stay relevant, institutions have to rethink all aspects of the higher education product, from programming to student support to organizational models.

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Higher education has existed for over a millennium in an effectively unchanged state, but the impetus to transform has arrived. Fast-changing labor demands, evolving learner expectations and transformed market realities are forcing college and university leaders to rethink the traditional postsecondary model and find ways to serve the growing numbers of lifelong learners. This idea has been broadly articulated as the 60-Year Curriculum (60YC), and executing on this vision demands a fundamental change in how higher education institutions must operate to serve students. In this interview, Hunt Lambert expands on the 60YC vision and shares his insights into how the organizational models of postsecondary institutions need to evolve to adapt to this approach.

The 60YC proposes that higher education providers, who happen to be best in the world at knowledge creation and dissemination through well-designed curriculum, expand that curricula concept from the current two-year AA, four-year BA, two-year master’s and seven-year PhD learning models into a 60-year model inclusive of 15- to 75-year-old learners and, most likely, beyond.

 

 

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