TED Conversations

Patrick King

TEDCRED 30+

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I propose that teachers from all over the world be allowed to upload videos on to Khan academy in a controlled fashion.

I've been using Khan academy since I watched this talk, videos ranging from how to acquire money for a startup to how stars are born, told in a clear and engaging fashion. However I feel like there could be so much more if people were encouraged to contribute content. Of course it would have to be regulated so that the user wouldn't be flooded with thousands of often subpar videos, but consider the possibilities. New teachers competing to create videos judged on accuracy and popularity would definitely bring new tools to the table, and the efficacy of different videos could easily be monitored by looking at the exercise performance of students watching them.
Once teachers from around the world are brought in on the project they would bring their content, their ideas and their students. The possibilities are immense, but one thing is for certain, despite his wide ranging intelligence, his goodwill and his magnificent teaching skills, Khan cannot build the global classroom alone.

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  • Apr 13 2011: Though Sal's videos have been effective for many people, I agree that having a variety of "instructors" with different levels of expertise, different methods of presentation, and different approaches might allow a more differentiated learning environment for students to access. The key would be to both organize the videos/presentations in easy to find sections (we teachers are obsessed with benchmarks and standards), and to somehow figure out how to rank the videos so the best ones rise above the others.

    I would love to have a system where students can access a variety of videos and resources that are pre-screened, diverse, and engaging, much like mini-TED talks focused on different topics and benchmarks we are covering in class!
  • Apr 12 2011: You can't contribute to Khan Academy currently, but you can at disqo.org. Anyone, from any background can and anyone can reassemble anyone's lessons into a course. Many of Khan's lessons are already on there. Good Luck and happy teaching!
  • Apr 12 2011: Why just teachers? Khan himself wasn't a teacher. I'm a mechatronic engineer myself and volunteer 3 hours a week at a local school to teach physics, I guess anyone who's able to tell a clear story should be allowed to upload a video. It would take time to assess all video's though! But other than that, great idea!
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    Apr 12 2011: Lets get this message to sal and his team! We should also provide more help and support if we want to make a gloabal classroom! but I dream of the future of Khan Academy to be like modern day youtube!
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    Apr 7 2011: I fully agree with this proposal. One would have to give the 'controlled fashion' some thought, but it would potentially be a great enhancement.
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    Apr 14 2011: I'll have to further investigate the site, but expectational none the less!
  • Apr 12 2011: I always felt the success of Khan Academy was Sal himself- his relaxed style, attitude, general approach and demeanor. How would you maintain the integrity of the "Sal style" or is that not necessary?
    • Apr 13 2011: I agree. Sal is an exceptional online teacher. I know, I trawl through lots of them everyday. It's a relatively new skill but he is rapidly becoming the international benchmark. I think the Khan Academy should keep that "brand" for want of another word. I would worry that a free for all on Khan Academy would dilute that brand some. Better to let other sites like disqo.org or the creative commons for education be the testing grounds for those brands. A quick disclaimer, I am involved with disqo.org but I do earnestly believe what I've written above.
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        Apr 14 2011: I agree that a free for all would be a bad idea, and that Khan's style is a big part of his success. Once a "brand" has been through the testing grounds however and a very competent educator has been found for a certain topic I see no reason why they shouldn't bee included on the more user friendly site of Khan academy. I feel that one of the advantages of having the bulk of the content that students will use available on one site is that positive feedback systems like the one used on khanacademy would be all encompassing.
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    Apr 11 2011: I just watched David Christian's big history talk, the big history project is another thing which could feature in the global classroom. It and other online education initiatives would get a lot more traffic if they existed on a centralized system.