Interview met Keynote Dale J. Stephens
1. What was your trigger to start the concept of "new ownership: the shift from top down to bottom up"?
"I decided to give college a try after years of unschooling myself. The frustration was immediate; since the 5th grade I had grown used to plowing my own educational path, and with college I was met with education prescribed from the top down where the student has very little control. This led me to start the UnCollege movement, which empowers learners all over the world to embrace ownership over their education rather than accepting it from the top down."
2. Why do we adapt this change so slowly? What prevents us from adapting it?
"There is a lot of social pressure out there for those looking to self-educate. The expectation is that students will graduate high school and immediately enroll in university. There also tends to be a fear for future career opportunities if a student decides to drop out. Most people have embraced the idea that college is a prerequisite for success. My message is different: college is the biggest impediment to success that students are facing today."
3. What companies or organizations do you think "get" new ownership and are at the forefront of this mega trend in terms of their products, services, experiences and business models?
"EdTech startups like Udemy, Udacity, Coursera, and similar organizations are at the forefront of this trend by making world-class education available to anyone around the world. They’re taking learning (their service) out of the classroom and giving ownership to individuals."
4. Why did you agree to speak at the e-Learning Event 2013? What are you hoping to bring to the event? What are you hoping to get out of participation?
"I wanted to speak at the e-Learning Event because I think it will be an ideal outlet for bringing awareness to the Uncollege movement. The concept of e-Learning fits perfectly with my message on self-directed higher education. I hope to bring a fresh perspective on higher education that recognizes 21st century problems and opportunities in the world of higher education. I hope to hear and be intrigued by progressive ideas from other speakers, and make beneficial connections with other festival participants."