The future of education

The future of education

Rethink learning

Shaping the future successfully cannot be accomplished without education. But how well equipped are our educational concepts for tomorrow’s society? And how can design competence be used effectively to future proof our educational system?

As early as 2007 and with the motto "Innovating to Learn, Learning to Innovate", the OECD demanded new educational concepts designed to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The focus of these efforts was not just on economic success, but also on cultural and social participation. Media competence, creativity, cooperation skills and social competence are at the top of the list of so-called 21st century skills. An analysis by the German Zukunftsinstitut also shows that there is consensus about these being essential educational goals for the transformation of the industrial society into a knowledge society. According to the study, the "success criterion for new and old educational programs (...) is their alignment with the requirements for the knowledge society of tomorrow”; and it is not only in the creative economy that "creativity, contextualization, personality, social skills and intrinsic motivation" are decisive for a successful performance on the job market.

However, at least in this country reality shows that there is still room for improvement in achieving these goals. In light of the experiences gained during the corona crisis, it is safe to say that the use of digital media in schools has largely failed. According to the latest Pisa study, an alarmingly high percentage among the 15-year-olds can neither spell nor calculate correctly. Also, educational opportunities for poorer families are still inferior to those of higher earners. Action is called for and organizational competence is needed. What can Design Thinking contribute to the development of new learning methods, and what can Social Design contribute to the strengthening of social skills? And lastly, what must tomorrow’s state-of-the-art teaching tools look like? Interdisciplinarity is more essential than ever, and design in its manifold forms provides key competencies to rethink learning.