What if... preparing students to lose jobs?

What if we designed learning to prepare students not to keep jobs, but rather to be ready when they lose them?

Inspired by this post by future-of-learning thought leader Heather McGowan, who writes,

“A report by Deloitte University Press on the impact of this digital transformation predicts that 50% of the content in an undergraduate degree will be obsolete within five years. This dramatic change whipsaws workers from job to job, from employer to employer, career to career. In this reality, learning and adapting are the best—and perhaps only—path to worker resilience across a long arc of experience and uniquely distinct careers. And the need to adapt will become even more apparent as workers live longer; those in today’s workforce can reasonably expect their careers to extend a decade or more past today’s average mid-sixties retirement age.

“So how is a student to keep up with all that change? They will have to continuously adapt to rising non-biological intelligence.” [1]


[1] As noted in “How do you solve a problem you’ve never seen before?” the study of Philosophy is a powerful way to keep up with change, because it forms learners who:

  • ask better and better questions

  • think clearly

  • develop and refine mental models of how the world works


Each Wednesday we share a “what if” scenario. These are not suggestions as much as provocations.

If you have a “what if” scenario you would like to share, just send an email (and indicate whether you would like it attributed it to you).


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Christian Talbot