Changing Generational Strategies In Self-Education

If you are at an advanced age now, you have already had all of the formal as well as most of the formal education you are likely to get. If you have done well, it is likely because you have used some of that formal education to do a good job or do various jobs for which you were well paid. You have probably retired and you are likely to be using that early formal education less to make money, but could still be using some of your early education to your benefit as an informed citizen participating in the decisions that must made at the neighborhood, community, country-wide, regional or world level.

You still read, reflect, write letters to government officials, to the editors of local or national newspapers or get involved in one or more non-governmental organizations. Alternatively, you may have a hobby or a special interest of some sort. You may even be involved in politics. You may still set for yourself new strategies for self-learning.  You may have your own strategy or you may become involved with others in short courses at local universities to learn many things perhaps more rapidly and effectively than you would learn them on your own. Indeed, you may never stop learning.

A challenge for the older learner will be anticipated in keeping pace with the rapid high tech transformation of the society. With the smart phones, smart televisions, ever more powerful computers, and electronic tablets and some other devices you can only guess at, you have the capacity to make all transactions and record keeping completely paperless. Considering the rapid rate of development of artificially intelligent and robotic systems with integrated powerful and inexpensive computer chips everywhere, you can also assume a more and more effective electronic interface between humans and their environment. Indeed, these efficiencies may improve much more rapidly than some in this group may be able to assimilate them.

In sharp contrast, the young are growing up in this increasingly high tech, high efficiency world. They will be able to adapt far more efficiently. It is, after all, their world. In a few years, they may lose contact with many items the current older generation has found familiar and comforting to have and which are being given up grudgingly. Paper, pencils, pens, newspapers, magazines, books, for example may soon become relics of the past. Of course, we will keep a few of these objects around so that the young and the old will have something to talk about. In time, the young will make the full transition and such objects will gradually disappear. As you enter this new world your self-educating strategies will change as well, some in ways that cannot be easily anticipated presently. Increasingly, work as it is known now will disappear and replaced by other responsibilities. The world will also be organized differently, but in ways equally hard to anticipate.  Those who are young now will learn very differently over their lifetime from those who are now currently old did. While much of that may be due to the vastly different and more highly technical world the in which the younger generation will soon be totally immersed, much that is fundamental will remain. We must all still communicate, create and at least give instructions to machines to build.


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