What do LinkedIn data tell us about the future of learning?

Last week higher education thought leader Jeff Selingo shared future of learning insights from LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner.

Weiner pointed to LinkedIn's "economic graph" (see right hand image below) showing that "communication skills" appear more than 3x as often as "software development" (see center image below).

Lest you jump to the conclusion that digital literacy doesn't matter...

    ...this is not an either / or proposition. Selingo went on to say:

    In D.C. today, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner says 'everyone needs to become a learner again.' He encouraged K-12 and higher education to emphasize three skills: 

    1. Critical reasoning
    2. Creative problem solving
    3. Collaboration

    Plus, digital fluency.

    "If you are digitally fluent," he said, "you are in a better position to learn that next skill."

    His list of skills sounds like the same skill sets I profiled in There Is Life After College (Chapter 2) that I heard from hiring managers over and over again:

    • curiosity
    • creativity
    • digital awareness
    • contextual thinking
    • humility

    What does all of this mean for the future of learning? If we trust LinkedIn's data, then the future of learning might point to a generalized, ideal profile of a learner who is a:

    critical, creative, collaborative, digitally fluent problem solver

    And, the Basecamp team would add:

    ...who is animated by a deep sense of purpose.

    What external data are you looking at when you think about the profile of your ideal learner?


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    Christian Talbot