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George C Carroll III

Campus College Chair, University of Phoenix Hawaii Campus

TEDCRED 500+

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Have we entered the WWW (Whatever, Whenever, Wherever) era of education? Will the promise of "education for all" finally become a reality?

With the explosion of learning online - including access to thousands of TED/TEDx Talks, resources like iTunesU, and many others, will we finally see global education become a reality?

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  • Feb 8 2012: Education can be provided free, nut people will opt for ,free or otherwise, the education only if it is going to make any meaningful impact in thier day-to-day life. For example, a mid-day meal was thought of an incentive for the parents as well as the student to come back to the school. There were many families for whom that was, whatever be the contenet, a square meal for that child. But children were observed to come in only at he meal time and would go back to whatever activity they were doing, mostly trying to earn something for the family.
    Th eGovernments have mony to spend for mid-day meals , but not for decent teachers, adequate rooms and other infrastucture!
    Similarly online learning also has still remained at the fringe even in the urban area, becuase of inadequate spread of the connectivity nad teaching aid resources and lacjk of awareness , and hence, accepatnce , by the teaching community.
    SInce ensuring the education to really reach all is still a distant reality, online eductaion will have to pass through a few more hurdles.
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      Feb 8 2012: Ashok,

      I may be wrong, but I think that what Mr Carroll is implying with this conversation is that many, who lacked the ability to be exposed to education on any kind of level before, now have free access to it in many parts of the world.

      For example, the other day someone here on TED shared that even though he could not go back to college for a graduate degree, he was using the kahn academy website to learn about economics, which is a passion of his.

      I think you are correct, not everyone on the planet has access to this technology, but it is probably a matter of time. Even here in big cities, not everyone can own a computer or have internet in their home, but, you can have a free library card and use the internet for free at the library.

      I enjoyed reading your comment and you have educated me on education in your part of the world. Thank you Ashok.
      • Feb 9 2012: There is no doubt about internet being the one single factor which has made the Age of Information to move at a far higher speed than was ever imagined.
        It does provide a huge amount of information, lierally at your finger tips.
        This is the peculiar dichotomy of our current times - the gap between HAVEs and HAVENOTs, at the respective extreme ends - does keep on widening whereas the aim of all developments of technology is to narrow down that gap.
        India may appear to be a 'devloping' country from most of the materialistic yardsticks. The [so called] formal education is one of such yardsticks. But it does not lack in the uncommonness of the common intuitive learning abilities [I am sure none of the human races would be falling short on this count]. The ease use of techno-gizmos like mobile phones on one end and thier smart and mature behavior during the elections epitomizes this uncommon common innovative trait.
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          Feb 9 2012: "India may appear to be a 'devloping' country from most of the materialistic yardsticks. The [so called] formal education is one of such yardsticks. But it does not lack in the uncommonness of the common intuitive learning abilities [I am sure none of the human races would be falling short on this count"

          I need you to explain this, for I did not quite understand what you mean?


          Also,

          "The ease use of techno-gizmos like mobile phones on one end and thier smart and mature behavior during the elections epitomizes this uncommon common innovative trait."

          And do you mean by this that it looks surreal to see Indians with mobile phones in their hands during election time.....that it's somehow out of place?

          Because, when cell phones first started to be implemented here, it was surreal to see a grandma in the market with a cell phone in her hand. It was kind of silly to look at....now it is so common......we are all so used to it. Is this what you mean? If not, please feel free to clarify.
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          Feb 9 2012: Got it.

          Thank you for clarifying your points. They made a big difference.

          I find your reasoning and view to be true. Our intuitive learning abilities help us to adapt to new technology regardless of higher education. And, when it comes to your example of voting on issues, higher education is not needed either, as long as their is widespread information educating the citizens on important matters.

          Good points Ashok.
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      Feb 9 2012: I think that we still need to stream line the education process & to campaign the need of education to every individual,no doubt that the recent reports of UNESCO speaks about the ratio of educated people are strategically growing bt there are so many hinderance to achieve the EFA.
      While we talk about e learning i guess we are not still stretched to that kind of learning as we still rely on the traditional method of learning with the physical apperance of a tutour.
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        Feb 9 2012: Do you find that those living in parts of India where American corporations have telemarketing offices enjoy more exposure to technology, and therefore have better access to on-line education?

        I ask, because we get calls from India all the time, usually promoting something for an American company. And I know they have access to the internet, I have asked them.
        • Feb 9 2012: I am sorry I could not put across my point of view in simple way.
          I will try again here:
          1.If one lokks at level of literacy, number of people who clear secondary school education, number of teachers per 1000 persons in rul area versus that in urban area, it would ceratinly appear that Indai needs to go a long way in terms of progrss on formal eductaion, in its traditoonal sense.
          2. However, these very people who may not have undergone [so called] formal education, easily can use devices like cell phne for simple text messaging. If enough content is availble for thier applications like market prices for thier produces, mobile banking etc., these people will be able to adopy these as easily as any formally eductaed persons.
          3. Second example of their intutive maturity is thier deft understanding of the issues and resultanat pattern of voting.
          Hence, more audio visual aids, like TED talks on the subk=jects which affect thier lies can spread the eductaion - awareness- of many vital issues, subject to availability of requisite infrastructure.
          Thus, w.. w... w... can be realised sooner, by aligning the right content through approproate technology.
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          Feb 10 2012: Well if i am narrating about EFA it includes both the urban & rural areas....I would say that the technology of E-learning & all the latest technology stuff that is quite emerging to be the future is yet to reach the rural than the urban areas.
          In India,something new to be accepted takes time as the traditional way had rooted down the hearts....!!!!!
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        Feb 10 2012: "something new to be accepted takes time as the traditional way had rooted down the hearts....!!!!!"

        It is difficult to let go of things that are deeply entrenched in one's heart.

        There is a quote I like that says: "Have you ever noticed that the only ones who like change are wet babies?" J. Lunden

        It is normal to fear the unknown. But, like with every new technology, or idea, little by little, as some brave the new, those who see it's benefits will start to join it.

        I really do think you CAN teach old dogs new tricks....it just takes patience and time.

        Be Well Balakrishna, I have enjoyed conversation with you and with Ashok and learning about technology in your part of the world.
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          Feb 13 2012: Thanks Mary,appreciate your thoughts.
          But my question OR my thoughts are that,does the changes in general(not specific on the EFA) to be initiated from the government bodies or it can be from every individual??Why do people wait for some government acts to be formed for accepting some good things??
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        Feb 13 2012: Hi again Balakrishna....well, I had never thought about this view of some people "waiting for some government bodies to act before accepting a good thing."

        Hmm. I would imagine that depending on what the "new thing" is the reactions of the individuals cannot be all the same.

        I would also imagine that some individuals are afraid of getting in trouble with government if they move ahead of it???

        I really don't know the answer Balakrishna, since your question/thought is very general.

        I hope you are able to get help from someone else here on TED.

        Be Well.

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