Top 10 Influential Personalities for Today's Education System
Education is an ever-changing environment that must adapt to the students' needs and society's demands. Thus. some of the most important individuals in our modern times have proven pivotal in helping to shape this evolving concept. Let us have a look at the top ten most influential personalities.
E. D. Hirsch, Jr.This innovator has been key in reshaping the United States educational system; stressing a concept known as the Common Core Curriculum. He believes that background knowledge plays a central role in a student's ability to understand material. The supposition is that by providing students with more comprehensive skill sets, the learning process can become more effective.
Diane RavitchThis woman was a key figure in the "No Child Left Behind" program under George H.W. Bush. Since then, she has actually become an opponent of the former accredited program; instead stressing that test-based accountability and other methodologies in the past must instead be replaced with an emphasis on cultural universality, national identity and individual achievements.
Anant AgarwalThis former president of the MIT-based project edX stresses that the way students are learning new materials has changed dramatically over the past few years. This paradigm shift can be attributed to an increased ability for educational systems to adopt a distance-learning stance whereas students can access materials from anywhere in the world; regardless of their location or economic status.
Jose FerreiraMr. Ferreira believes that the personalization of educational content will play a central role in improving test scores. This "adaptive learning" approach is said to help identify strengths and weaknesses while providing targeted lesson packages based off of each student's individual necessities.
Conrad WolframAlong with his brother Stephen, Conrad believes that the area of mathematics needs to be reformed to reflect the changing technological society that will confront the learning process. He advocates the use of calculators and computers in lieu of hand-based problem solving, as he states the learning process can be streamlined and tailored to the needs of 21st century applications.
Sebastian ThrunThis robotics expert is an outspoken proponent of the power of online access to educational programs. Frustrated that he was only able to reach 200 students per semester in a traditional learning environment, he began to offer free online courses that attracted no less than 160,000 applicants. He continues work to spread access to education through the internet on a global scale.
Sir Kenneth RobinsonThis former professor has embraced the concept that western-stye education systems undervalue creativity. He believes creativity and innovation are not only key factors in the learning process but also underpin overall educational success as well as domestic economic development.
Freeman HrabowskiMr. Hrabowski is currently the president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and has been a primary figure in improving the test scores and academic performances of minorities. His approach has led to higher graduation rates and a greater proportion of students continuing into higher, collegiate-level education.
Linda Darling-HammondFor over two decades, Mrs. Darling-Hammond has played a central role in reforming the education system of teachers themselves; stressing the need for these educators to adapt to students' requirements while reforming their own classrooms and communities. This proactive educational stance stresses that teachers as opposed to bureaucrats should determine the direction of modern education.
Salman KhanMr. Khan is the proponent of the Khan Academy; an online platform designed to aid students who need to learn at their own pace. This student-centered approach has already been introduced in pilot programmers in California and may see a wider adoption in the years to follow. At present, the online Khan Academy is already home to more than 3,000 individual lessons that students can access at their own leisure.
So, it is quite easy to appreciate the influential role that these ten innovators have already imparted on the educational system. The central themes of the majority of these approaches centre on distance learning, student-driven feedback and the ability for teachers to play more of an active role in shaping the educational framework in the near future. In turn, it is expected that these ideas will influence a broad range of educational tools. Teaching curriculum, essay writing industry, and online learning will all feel the effects of these and other progressive changes.