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Better than average Kurzweil speech

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⌛⇒ MITOMOUSE has been fully funded!

#31 modelcadet

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Posted 27 August 2007 - 12:24 PM

Ok, I hinted at this, but the idea essentially is to open the education accreditation process (has anyone already tried this?) Right now there's a movement in open-sourcing educational materials, but we're still stuck in this unnecessarily redundant educational system.

Why do we always need more math and science teachers, seriously? Why not get a few programmers to collaborate with wiki or connexions people and completely open-source the whole project. People can take math tests online. The only real reason (aside from the newness of user-generated content services) is neo-Luddite friction, especially from the government.

It's going to be about another week before I can buy a domain, but I really want to start getting a community together for this sort of thing. There are so many reasons to do it, and much of the content (such as AP tests, GEDs, language placement tests, etc etc etc) already exist. It would be so incredibly easy to have a free university of phoenix with open lenses (certain companies could ascribe to not only your standard 4 year academic money bonfires, but specific course materials, videos, and tests up to third party's standard). You don't even need government acknowledgment, as economic need would drive for accredited workers in newer, in demand skillsets.

Like... right now, O'Reilly offers courses in web design for free. He goes up to .NET and AJAX, I think. Why not have a free version of that and even include accreditations in the new post AJAX languages, like Silverlight and Apollo (a.k.a. AIR).

More importantly than accessing a seriously untapped economies of scale, such an open accreditation breaks the educational system away from this stupid fucking semester-long course structure. Why is a math course, for instance, broken only into "Calculus" or "Algebra II" and not "U Substitution" or "Factoring Quadratic Equations." Sure, it's great to have a solid base of knowledge, but who determines what that base is? Of course you need prerequisite knowledge of specific things to learn other things, but that's easily addressed in an open system.

"But of course," the people cry, "learning online and in a classroom aren't the same thing at all." These people are right! Learning online provides, in general, a more efficient transfer of knowledge, as students can select content (or methods of conveying specific content) that more interest or apply to them. In addition, in an open system, there's nothing to prevent people from learning face to face, the good ole fashioned way. These systems are still accredited in some way.

Anyway, I'm going to continue working on this project. I have several people onboard already, and as soon as I can afford to buy a home for this guy, I'm going to put together a wiki, an email list, a message board, the whole 9 yards (minus the last one, which is the whole content creation business, which is the "..." before "profit.") I'll definitely keep this board posted, because there are so many intelligent people here (and please PM me if this has already been done or something).

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