Acknowledging every learner’s unique needs, author and education professional Chandana Watagodakumbura tells us more about his research and proposal for identifying individual learning styles to achieve holistic education.
Education for the purpose of reaching full potential
As we can see above, ideal or true learning and human development processes are much more complex than we previously thought. Within the human species, or more specifically within a single species, we have seen a large number of differences; every individual is unique neurologically and psychologically and different from other members of the species. Now, the challenge we face is how we can provide a fair and just opportunity for unique individuals to learn and develop to their full potential. To reach this high potential level, each individual need to rely more on his or her strengths while at the same time improving on any weaker aspects, so long as they are identified. Don’t forget that if individuals are correctly motivated and efforts are directed properly, they have the capacities to learn and improve throughout the lifespan. The methodology we need is definitely much more complex than “one size fits all” approach. The writer suggests that we need to uniquely identify individuals in psychological and neurological terms, along with respective personality characteristics, at an early age, and they should be sent in a unique learning path so that everyone can achieve his or her full potential. Further, I should emphasise that we need to do this unique identification of individuals and sending in an individual learning path in the mainstream education system so that we provide a fair and just educational framework for everyone.
Economic and societal impact of education
“Hmm! Stop will you,” will be the reaction at this stage of those who are more focused on managing finances and economies. True, from our current context where managing economies and finances is more important than humanistic development of our individuals. We reiterate when we refer to humanistic development that it is what we are capable of achieving biologically species-wide as human beings, not a gimmick of trying to make human beings “religious”, as some would premeditate. We essentially need a change in priorities – humanistic development of individuals to their full potential, with enhanced creativity and wisdom is at least has to be equally important as managing economies. For decades, if not for centuries, giving the highest priority only to manage economies or financial aspects at the expense of other important areas hasn’t taken us much far, positively, in terms of collectively, sustainable social developments, and individually human development, are concerned. In the recent popular book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” by Thomas Piketty, the French economist, highlighted the increasing negative social impacts taking place over the years due to inequality in wealth distribution, or the increasing gap between the poor and rich. Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel laureate in economics, when visited Australia recently, highlighted a similar point in regard to the need of overcoming inequality by prompting governments to invest in human development and education. Governments and any other organisation that are responsible for providing appropriate funding should see this as a fruitful investment in human capital that is definitely going to pay back in the longer run. Unlike many other short-term returns of investments the above organisations would be willing to comply, we are looking for returns only after two to three or more decades. In summary, the returns will be in terms of a sustainable social development. We would see less psychological and psychiatric problems in individuals of our society; reliance on drugs and alcohol will come down; the crime rates will reduce; alienation of gifted and other exceptional individuals will minimise; issues with those who are from low socio-economic backgrounds will suppress; better operating human beings will become more productive taking better decisions individually and professionally. We are anticipating all these improvements in the social space as we have individuals reaching their full potential in a life-long journey of learning and human development. Some individuals will reach the targets quicker while others may achieve it later. There is no competition between individuals to win the race as we have raised awareness in undeniable individual differences and uniqueness. We aim to achieve all these by providing individuals with individual learning paths, having identified each individual uniquely in psychological and neurological terms in the mainstream education system. We are applying the simple concept of special education more broadly and inclusively to cater every individual in our societies.
Get to know author Chandana Watagodakumbura more by visiting these links:
Read the first part of his blog here. More authors have shared their literary inspiration on the Xlibris Blog and the Xlibris Indie Authors Roundup. Learn free writing, editing, and book marketing tips from the Xlibris Writer’s Workshop.