Monday, December 19, 2011

Future skills

Future Or Bust! by Vermin Inc, on Flickr
CC BY-NC-SA by  Vermin Inc 
21st century skills is a pretty well-worn concept by now but despite repeated calls from industry the education sector is still rather slow to react. The California-based Institute of the Future has now released a report called Future Work Skills 2020 and the findings are worth quoting here. They do not discuss what jobs or fields will be at the forefront in the years to come but have investigated which skills will be essential. The findings are brieflt summarized in an article in Gigaom, The 10 key skills for the future of work.
Have a look through the list and decide if schools and higher education are able to address these issues and if not, what needs to change?
  • Sense-making. The ability to determine the deeper meaning or significance of what is being expressed
  • Social intelligence. The ability to connect to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions
  • Novel and adaptive thinking. Proficiency at thinking and coming up with solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule-based
  • Cross-cultural competency. The ability to operate in different cultural settings
  • Computational thinking. The ability to translate vast amounts of data into abstract concepts and to understand data-based reasoning
  • New-media literacy. The ability to critically assess and develop content that uses new media forms and to leverage these media for persuasive communication
  • Transdisciplinarity. Literacy in and ability to understand concepts across multiple disciplines
  • Design mind-set. Ability to represent and develop tasks and work processes for desired outcomes
  • Cognitive load management. The ability to discriminate and filter information for importance and to understand how to maximize cognitive functioning using a variety of tools and techniques
  • Virtual collaboration. The ability to work productively, drive engagement and demonstrate presence as a member of a virtual team

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