Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Summer holidays - says who?

I've been offline for the past six weeks or so, taking a break over summer. I'm back into it this week, with a mountain of paperwork on my desk, an overflowing inbox, and Google Reader bursting at the seams! But while I've been relaxing, one of my Marketing students has been continuing to engage with the Marketing community through his blog(s).

Let me introduce Zac Martin, a 19 year-old, undergraduate Marketing student at Monash University. In between going to the beach, partying, and looking for part-time work this summer, Zac has continued to blog about Marketing, taking control of his learning, and building a name (and future) for himself in the process. Like most Gen Y students, social media is part of his life, and it always will be.

I don't expect all of my students to be as motivated as Zac, but there are some serious lessons for all educators here. We should be preparing our courses for many more "Zacs" over the coming years.

This is what Zac is teaching me:
  • The classroom is no longer an isolated space. Our students can (and will) connect with the outside world more than ever before.
  • Learning is not isolated to a 13-week semester. It is a lifelong process, and we should build our courses accordingly.
  • Students can take control of their own learning, changing the role of the teacher from "expert" to "coach".

Thanks Zac - I'm proud to be associated with you - and slightly embarrassed that you've been working while I've been relaxing!