Friday, November 30, 2018

Jerry Andersen — A free, teacher-less university in France is schooling thousands of future-proof programmers

“We don’t teach anything,” says Nicolas Sadirac, head of École 42. “The students create what they need all the time.”...
Who cares about another coding school?
Schools around the world, from kindergarten up, are scrambling to figure out what skills kids need to thrive in the future. Disagreement abounds about which skills should be prioritized, and how they should be taught, but opinions coalesce around some mix of collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, communication, and initiative (or agency)....
When Sadirac describes École 42, it is easy to forget it is a school he is talking about.
“I would mainly say it’s not about learning.”
“We think we are an art school.”
“Knowledge is un-useful, dangerous, and removes your freedom.”
All of this must be put in the context of programming, and how information technology has changed. École 42 is not about learning because learning has traditionally been about mastering a body of content, or set of skills.
“We should not try to learn and memorize stuff,” Sadirac says. “It’s dangerous, it makes you less agile.”
Getting information to stick in your brain is complicated and hard. Getting it out, to make way for new way things, can be even harder. Sadirac’s previous job, as it happens, involved retraining adults. The biggest impediment to them learning new things was often unlearning what they already knew. Case in point: around 30% of the students in the swimming pool come with coding experience. After one month, those with experience perform no better than those without it.
Around 30% of the students come with coding experience. After one month, they perform no better than those without it.
He considers École 42 an art school because programming is more art than science, he says. Two myths that persist about coding is that you have to be good at math and that it is a solitary endeavor.…
Knowledge is “dangerous,” Sadirac says, because of the way technology has changed. Companies first applied digital technology to transform existing processes, which required high levels of organization and knowledge, but not a lot of creativity. Today, as companies reinvent themselves around everything digital, it is programming that reinvents processes. That requires people to work together and think broadly about how to solve real-world problems

1 comment:

Kaivey said...

Art students - The best!