The appearance of Salman Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, will prove significant well beyond the opportunity to hear from a man who Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates described as “a true pioneer in integrating technology and learning.” It represents the launch of a new initiative designed to bring Khan’s ideas to bear on the delivery of education to University of Toledo students.
In conjunction with the first installment of the Jesup Scott Honors College Distinguished Lecture Series, Dr. Scott Scarborough, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs, announced the creation of the UT One World Schoolhouse, inspired by Khan Academy and Khan’s book, The One World Schoolhouse. The schoolhouse will serve as a worldwide association of educators working to explore and test new educational paradigms, models and tools.
Through a triad of divisions, the UT One World Schoolhouse will deliver technological advancements in education, an educational lab, and a cohesive approach to international education.
“We’re thrilled that The University of Toledo wants to explore Khan Academy concepts in the UT One World Schoolhouse,” Khan said. “We are looking forward to being a part of this effort and the educational benefits that it can bring about for learners everywhere.”
The divisions of the schoolhouse include:
• Educational Games and Simulation Division to develop advanced educational games for all levels of learning. This division will connect Main Campus simulation to the new advanced simulation center on Health Science Campus.
• Learning Innovation Laboratories that will be located in renovated space on the second floor of Carlson Library on UT’s Main Campus. This division will partner with numerous educational providers to test and then demonstrate new technological and experiential models of education.
• International Connections through which UT global educational endeavors will be managed. This division will work to facilitate and expand international connections to give students of all types and backgrounds a global education.
“We believe, as Salman Khan does, that the ideal model of education, both today and in the future, is a balanced combination of personalized education that is facilitated and enhanced by technology and experiential learning that takes many forms, including advanced simulation and educational games,” Scarborough said. “Other forms of experiential learning include internships, co-ops, service learning, clinical rotations, field experiences, creative works, study abroad, international conversations and undergraduate research.
“Our goal is to position The University of Toledo as the university of experiential learning. The use of the term, ‘One World Schoolhouse,’ signals our University’s intent to test and then apply Khan’s model of education where it applies best.”
The initiative will be led by Bill McCreary, a senior leader with years of high-level managerial and technical expertise.
“Bill’s past experience and ability to lead the development of advanced simulation education games and his connections to key outside stakeholders make him the perfect choice for this new initiative,” Scarborough said.
The University will enter the tactical phase for creation of the UT One World Schoolhouse, with the entity expected to be operational in fall 2014.