7,000 Words on Pearson

A terrific example of independent (and free) in-depth edtech analysis.

January 9, 2014

If you have not done so already I recommend that you schedule 30 minutes of your day to read and think about Michael Feldstein’s essay Can Pearson Solve the Rubric’s Cube?.

Any thoughts, ideas, or reactions to what Pearson is doing please share on e-Literate.  

Why is this sort of in-depth independent edtech analysis so rare?

It would be great if our edtech community could find ways to support the sort of independent thinking and writing, in-depth analysis that is free to access and is not tied to any particular agenda.

Pearson’s efforts at transformation is an incredibly important story for our community to think about.

There will be important lessons in Pearson’s experience to what we all face in trying to meet our own challenges in higher education.

What Pearson is trying to do, and what Michael writes about, is transform the culture of the company.  

This is not to say that large publishing companies are in some way mirrors to universities.   A not-for-profit institution of higher learning is of course very different from a for-profit publishing (or educational services) company.   

Like Pearson, higher education must face up to the need to transform our organizations to be responsive to shifts in the needs of our learners and the fundamental economics underlying our industry.

Like Pearson, we work in large and complicated organizations, with organizational structures and modes of operation that were created during very different economic, social and technological periods.

Like Pearson, higher education needs to figure out how to evolve our structures, operations and methods while simultaneously staying true to our core values.

So Michael’s 7,000 word description of Pearson’s efforts to change should be a story that we all care about, even if we don’t purchase any Pearson services and products (which is in fact unlikely).

We need to find ways to support the sort of long-form and deep thinking into our education industry that Michael models in his Pearson essay.

We need to find ways to support communities like e-Literate, and writers such as Michael Feldstein (and his partner Phil Hill), in their efforts to provide this sort of sophisticated reporting and analysis.

What business and economic models are available to help support the writing of more 7,000 word essays on our industry?

Who else is writing the sort of detailed and thoughtful independent analysis that is exemplified in Michael’s Pearson essay?

Where else can we find this sort of freely accessible (and open commenting) writing on the edtech world, analysis that requires a more sustained level of attention from both authors and readers?


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