University Future-makers: Transforming higher education through value-based vision-driven learning design

By Rikke Toft Nørgård

Today, we as higher education institutions and teachers find ourselves in a rapidly changing landscape. We are told that if we do not change with it we will perish. Looking around entire new forms of universities are mushrooming (Staley, 2015), a plethora of online courses, virtual classrooms and distance education formats questions the need for classrooms or campuses, and MOOCs, personal learning environments, micro-credentials along with digital assessment and learning analytics and threatens to render the teacher superfluous (Trend Report, 2016).

If students can take our certificate from home and on their own outside institutions – what are universities really good for? And if this can happen through systems that guide the students through the process from beginning to end and where the students can take courses when they want, in the pace they want and hand in assignments that the systems automatically assess and grade the student hands-in – what are teachers really good for? Taking your own customized education in bite-sizes from your sofa just like Netflix, and without having to put up with demanding teachers, boring courses or challenging group work can easily seem like a preferable future when compared to the current state of most higher education institutions.

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