The Way Things Are

Published: 7 September, 2017

Categories: General

The Way Things Are

The apocalyptic trend sweeping mass media for the best part of the last decade has me thinking; how would I survive the hypothetic apocalypse (because main characters never die), and then what would come after ‘it’ was all over?

I have zero interest in politics, presidency or medical services, other survivors would have to rebuild that. However, education, an entire educational system readying people to best live their lives and flourish in the areas they enjoy? Now things start to get interesting!

Imagine a world where every assumed and entrenched norm was wiped off the planning board and a new, authentic, valuable learning experience could be designed and implemented across the board. A space where old and young alike could build skill sets applicable to the world they lived in and learning paths spoke to who you are, what you enjoyed and where your talents and gifts lay.

I have never been able to count in multiples of four past 16 without silently adding four to ever total, nor am I been able to spell ‘available’. Surprisingly though, I am a fully functional adult with the skill set and creativity needed to remodel the educational system from the ground up. Imagine all the fat we could trim from what is assumed to be necessary in everyday education, all the value which could be added to each person’s learning journey. It thrills me to the point of hoping for the next apocalypse.

Then I look around and realise that I am still part of a very alive and populated world with many, many, deeply entrenched rules and stakeholders, and that is the way things are. In all likelihood, this is a battle I will not win.

The battle I can and do win though, is found in the cloud, in the ether where learning is dynamic and not bound by space, time or pace. You can learn anything online, you can guide your learning and build a veritable toolbox of skill sets, curated by you, the learner, based on your needs, capacity, talents and imagination.

There is a catch of course, not all online courses are created equally. As with purchasing any product off the shelf, you the learner and consumer, looks for value and quality. It is my personal experience as a habitual (addicted) consumer of online knowledge and information that the quality of any course can be judged by the brand endorsing it. In the consumer driven world which we live in, brands are well aware that their perceived value is only as strong as their most recent endorsement.

Pick a brand so passionate about education that they secretly hope for an apocalypse.


Gail Henning, is Inscape’s Online Academic Manager she completed her Master’s Degree in Interior Architecture from the University of Pretoria in 2004. She started working for Inscape Education Group in 2007 as a part time lecturer while remaining active in the built environment. In 2012, she began formally studying education through UNISA and in 2015 completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Adult Education and began a Master’s Degree in 2016 and should complete her studies through the University of Johannesburg in 2018. Gail is passionate about the act and philosophy of education, more specifically how and why adults learn.