Friday, February 19, 2021

CURMUDGUCATION: Khan Academy Makes Its Next Big Move

CURMUDGUCATION: Khan Academy Makes Its Next Big Move
Khan Academy Makes Its Next Big Move

The Khan Academy (aka that library of instructional videos that come in varying degrees of accuracy) is finally ready to take its next step and morph into an on-line-ish micro-credential competency-based school-ish thing. What does that even mean? Let me try to explain the vision behind this, the people behind this, and--well, then we can just reflect on how many kinds of bad ideas we're looking at here.

The Unbundled Micro-Credentialed Future

An idea beloved by one sector of the education privatizing world in micro-credentials. You've encountered this stuff if there's a newer-generation video game console in your home on which games offer a variety of badges to show your various accomplishments. In the ed world, they're called micro-credentials, and all the big guns are playing with them.

A few years ago I came across a fully realized portrait of the vision called The Ledger. It brings together Competency Based Education, data mining, personalized learning, the cradle to career pipeline, the gig economy, and the transformation into a master and servant class society. In this world, you wouldn't need "schools" or "teachers" (Knowledgeworks once made a whole big list of new jobs for them, all servile and dumb). You would get your education in bits and bites--a work experience here, a few sessions with a wise tutor there, each one earning you a  new micro-credential, which in turn qualifies you to act as somebody else's wise tutor. It would all be recorded in a blockchain-type digital identity (yes, there are already people working on those, too) along with all pertinent data about you. The unbundling of education also CONTINUE READING: CURMUDGUCATION: Khan Academy Makes Its Next Big Move