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  • Sahil Shaikh

Future of Sustainable learning

What is Sustainable Learning?

Sustainable learning is a model of education that uses technology, data and social media to drive engagement, support knowledge retention and improve learner outcomes. This is distinct from the traditional way of training, in which lecturers deliver content to students one-on-one. Sustainable learning systems are designed to provide a blend of asynchronous and synchronous learning activities to improve the efficiency of content delivery and foster a more collaborative learning environment for learners. This model of learning is more cost-effective, provides higher levels of engagement and retention of information and is more accessible to learners with diverse learning preferences.

Why is Sustainable Learning important?

The digital age has ushered in many changes in the way people live, work and learn. Over the past couple of decades, many of these changes have been driven by technology. This has resulted in a steep increase in the prevalence of devices, in addition to a general decline in the use of face-to-face communication. This shift has made it easier for people to connect with each other, but it has also changed how people interact with information and how that information is created. This has resulted in an abundance of information, but a dearth of the sort of content that is useful and relevant for specific audiences. The rise of digital communication and content creation has also brought about wide-scale changes to the economics of learning. These changes have resulted in significant price inflation in most organizations, especially under the pressures of rising employee salaries and an expanding workforce.

Benefits of Sustainable Learning

Sustainable learning systems provide numerous benefits for users, including: - Greater efficiency in the delivery of content: The shift towards sustainable models of learning means that learners will be more engaged in their own learning experiences. This is because these systems have a greater focus on the use of technology, which has been shown to improve learner productivity and engagement. - Greater access to content: Users of sustainable models of learning have easier access to digital content, since these systems are sometimes built as open platforms. This has been useful for some groups of people, such as those with a disability or who are financially disadvantaged. - Reduced costs: The shift towards sustainable models of learning has been shown to reduce costs for the organizations that implement this model, since it reduces the need for expensive buildings, equipment and staff.

Challenges in building a sustainable learning system

Sustainable learning systems have the potential to address many of the challenges that have plagued traditional models of learning, including: - Shortage of skilled staff: The looming skills shortage in many fields has been a major barrier to implementation of sustainable models of learning. To address this challenge, it will be important to promote the role of facilitators or Trainers in teaching, research and service delivery roles. - Increased cost of technology: The adoption of sustainable models of learning often means that more resources are needed to support the use of digital technologies such as computers, software, networks and other hardware. - Lower availability of resources: Sustainable models of learning can require additional funding to cover the costs of people’s salaries, equipment rental and maintenance, content licensing and other expenses. - Lack of access to certain content: Sustainable models of learning can make it difficult for certain groups of people to access certain content, especially if they are financially disadvantaged.

Strategies to build a sustainable learning system

In order to build a sustainable learning system, it will be important to consider the following strategies: - Focus on outcomes: Sustainable models of learning focus on the outcomes that users are looking for, such as increased knowledge, skills and abilities. This enables learners to apply these outcomes to their own unique situations, such as the career path they are pursuing. - Integrate different types of learning: Sustainable models of learning aim to blend different types of learning, including face-to-face, online and other forms of learning. This ensures that learners get the best possible experience from the different types of content and engagement styles available. - Embrace technology: Using digital technologies to drive engagement and integration among content types and to promote a blended approach to learning can be used as a sustainable model of learning. - Maintain flexibility: Sustainable models of learning need to be flexible enough to accommodate different types of learners, who may have different preferences for learning experiences.

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