Digital Education: from hype and disappointment to change

Andras Szűcs


Powerful and sophisticated ICT is part of everyday life and the world of learning is not an exception. E-learning, open and distance education have been important fields of intellectual excitement and innovative development. The demand for people with new, enhanced skills is growing. Pressure is on all players of the online education community to keep up with new learning, and supply the skills demanded by growing economies.

The challenges posed by the new technologies are permanent whilst the role of human, socio-cultural-economic themes are more and more at the cutting edge. Technology is with us everywhere which validates the horizontal-holistic approach for imperative questions of the period. For the transforming education landscape, challenges come increasingly from the structural and policy fields. Social and economic tensions raise the issues of scalability and micro-credentialing. Practitioners are seeking right approaches to provide learning opportunities. Micro, meso and macro aspects open new lenses for considering the problems. Digital credentials and open badges are the new currencies, starting to transform business models in education.

The educational framing, from policy level down to the actual learning scenario, allows for various types and variations of of ICT enhanced, collaborative, open, distance education and e-learning. Finding and applying the right mix of information, knowledge and creativity is of primary importance for the educational experience, to bring together the strengths of the past with the challenges of the present and opportunities for the future.

The European Union initiatives emphasize solutions to emerging needs, seek to improve competitiveness and professional development; enhance cross-sectoral skills and fuel the engines of social innovation – creativity, entrepreneurship, critical thinking and problem solving.

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