White Sp ace - n. Potential, tabula rasa, the beginner’s mind, the future . . .
NEW SYNAPTIC PATHWAYS
Imagine a curriculum that is eclectic, interdisciplinary, self-organizing, collaborative, and customizable—a sort of CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE; accessed through a portal that provides guidance, aggregates learning opportunities and eventually provides testing and certification.
This new model could also allow universities to focus on the strengths of its faculty, create new offerings, and raise these well above the industry standard. Instead of duplicating services and classes for which schools are not equipped or funded, allow students to take these in other departments, online, or at other universities. This can be accomplished by relaxing requirements and transfer policies and allowing students to customize their programs. It also reduces cost, as the department does not have to be “all things to all people.” At a large state universities, this type of program allows for unimagined juxtapositions of knowledge from many disciplines. The possibilities are mind-blowing.
The new curriculum should be:
1. Agile & Responsive - allowing for self-organization, assessment and customization in real time
2. Strategic - focused on strengths with a clear identity & mission
3. Trans-time and trans-media - multi-channel, anywhere, anytime education
4. Collaborative – partnerships/internships with other departments, universities, and industry
5. Experiential - how to learn, not what to learn, independent inquiry, students as content creators
6. Hybrid - team teaching, peer teaching, faculty as “knowledge brokers,”
7. Connected – online and physical workshops, videos, classes, etc.
8. Transparent - free flow of information, trust, no more silos
9. Complexity Busting - Motto: “Simplify, Simplify, Simplify!”
10. Visionary - develop new hybrid courses, tools, and methods for learning
11. Social - Group projects, study groups, etc.
12. Entrepreneurial - develop alternative sources of income utilizing the staff, equipment, and space you already have (e.g., precollege programs, online courses, in-house agencies, professional workshops and skills bootcamps, etc. that could be held on weekends or during summer breaks and that employ students)
I recommend an Ideo-type Deep Dive with stakeholders: faculty, staff, students, industry partners, etc. to co-create this future-oriented, ground-breaking new ecosystem.
• New Brand Strategy
• New Culture
• New Systems
• New Offerings
• New Delivery Channels
• New Digital Tools
• New Roles
• New Methods
• New Responsive Framework
• New Certification & Accreditation
• New Space
• New Collaborators
• New Suppliers
• Phase I – Deep Dive
• Phase II - Research
• Phase III - Co-Design New Model
• Phase IV - Build and Test Agile Prototype
• Phase V - Intervention Design & Implementation
• Phase VI - Grow, Test, Improve & Repeat
• State Officials/Civic Leaders
• Industry Professionals
• Business Leaders