Lauren Della Bella and I recently had the honor of leading The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) in a virtual coffee chat. The conversation took a few different directions throughout, but if you missed it, here are three big takeaways from our conversation.
Gaming Can Change the World
Gaming immerses you in a fictional world, similar to reading a good book. Yet no one has ever said that reading is a waste of time. Why say it about gaming?
For millions of people, gaming is often viewed as purely recreational… but it can be so much more than that.
Take the core properties of what video games, or even card games and board games to some extent, provide for the players. The basic principles are extremely similar to what a student goes through on a daily basis to earn a college degree or thrive in the workplace. Games provide obstacles, an end goal and finally, a purpose. There is a strategy to winning. They require drive and determination. Then there are the intricacies of the games themselves; in virtual, online gaming you are immersed in a fictional world, similar to how one feels when they read a good book.
Yet no one has ever said that reading is a waste of time, have they? Why say it about gaming?
That’s why it’s our belief that gaming and learning go hand in hand in our disrupted learning patterns. There is value in planning now for a completely different learning experience for future generations.
The College Business Model is Changing Rapidly
Businesses all over the world have changed due to COVID-19. Many have adapted to fit the new, mostly digital landscape. One business that has been affected, possibly more so than any, is higher education. Colleges and universities heavily depend on revenue from housing, food and other fees that have nothing to do with the classroom. Because of this, they are finding it harder to charge more for tuition—after all, online classes are generally less expensive and more flexible than a typical college curriculum.
The solution? Universities are beginning to turn to corporations. These corporations are adamant about quick and dynamic learning that will enable them to find and educate their future employees. And their future employees will not just sit in a classroom, listening to a professor. Instead, they will take classes in smaller “chunks” and on topics that will help students as much in the short term as in the long term – making their future employability more viable than ever before.
And as we all know, learning does not stop after you earn your college degree. It cannot. We must continue to educate ourselves to create a better future for everyone. Learning should always be lifelong.
An Explosion of Innovation
As previously mentioned, businesses and universities are changing their business models – and are being forced to do so very quickly. One reason for this change is the technology that is available to us now, which wasn’t available 10+ years ago. The ubiquity of technology has fundamentally changed the way colleges and universities deliver curriculum. Through gaming, virtual and augmented reality, on-demand digital learning, video chats and more, distance learning could soon be the way of the future, even for those who want to learn about anatomy, biology, and other topics that were formerly impossible to do remotely.
With the difficulties that have been presented to us due to COVID-19, an explosion of innovation is likely to come out of it, and soon. The next step to this though, would be to merge the virtual and physical learning to create the best possible learning experience for all.