2020 and Beyond: Future Scenarios for Education in the Age of New Technologies

Keri Facer, Hans Dannen

01 January 2007

At the present time the UK education system is witnessing a rash of crystal ball gazing. The Education 2020 report provides a vision for personalised learning for the next 13 years; the Building Schools for the Future programme is engendering debates about the institutions and structures of schooling for the next 50 years; and the 21st century curriculum reviews at QCA are generating discussions about the purpose and function of education for the next 100 years. These discussions are not restricted to the UK; since the late 1990s nation states around the world, and international organisations such as the OECD and UN, have been exploring the future of education in the 21st century.

This publication is intended to challenge and disturb some of the assumptions underlying these discussions by reviewing current predictions about the development in capacities of digital technologies between now and 2020.

In producing this brief paper, we want to ask the questions:

  • To what extent are we prepared, as a society and as educators, for the massive changes in human capabilities that digital technologies are likely to enable in the next 13 years?
  • To what extent are our future visions for education based upon assumptions about humanity, society and technology that are no longer valid?
  • To what extent can we, as educators, help to shape the developments of technology in order to enhance human development?
Read the report Read the article