TED Conversations

Ron Burnett

President and Vice-Chancellor, Emily Carr University of Art and Design


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Are Educational Institutions responding to the challenges of teaching and learning in the 21st Century?

The Digital Age offers all sorts of opportunities for learners ranging from the formal to the informal, from the Web to the classroom and the studio. Why do educational institutions continue to rely on traditional models of learning? Why have schedules, disciplines and departments remained the same as in the 20th Century? Why has the architecture of schools changed so little? How have learners changed?


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  • Mar 3 2011: In brief, NO. The poor institutions have a giant scenario laid out for them. In.the past schools were not meant to care for social ills.and make up for societal weaknesses. Today, they are too busy trying to keep up with the demands of School Boards (ours was particularly lobotomized).while attempting to keep children learning. I think they are fighting a losing battle because the wonderful teachers we train are burned out by their experience though they want to do well.

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