KIC VP for Academic Affairs, Prof. Nabil el Kadhi, participated in a discussion organized by Future Cities Africa to present his view on the education of tomorrow.
‘Smart cities need smart citizens, and smart citizens need smart education’ stated the host, Mr. Dan Claassen, paving the way to discuss the schema for future education. Essentially, as Prof. El Kadhi mentioned, the education of tomorrow will aim to prepare today’s students for future jobs, embedding technology and moving towards a customized and smart education.
Following such a preamble, Prof. El Kadhi elaborated on related topics. He outlined how African countries, considering their diversity and unique position, can learn from a digitalized education experience executed by higher education institutions in the UAE.
Nevertheless, associated challenges were pointed out during the discussion, such as the issues of inclusivity, accreditation, and skills evaluation. He also clarified the difference between Digital and Distance education, commonly encountered nowadays, and Smart education, by that highlighting that future schools and universities should think differently about their academic approaches. The future is Smart.
Smart education will be the foundation of smart cities. According to Prof. El Kadhi, a smart city is where all services are available through a click, are easy to get, affordable, scalable, and controlled.
Smart citizens are ready for digitalization, and they understand the limits and the uses of artificial intelligence. Based on that, a brief speculation was presented on how cities might look like 20 years from now. Prof El Kadhi detailed the concept of smart education that should have flexible curricula design that allows customization of the education not only in the delivery mode but also the content, the structure of the curriculum and the evaluation of gained skills to the learner profile and competencies. An area where Artificial Intelligence and auto learner profiling will be of a good use and a fundamental component.
To wrap-up, Prof El Kadhi stated several outstanding UAE experiences toward Smart education such as the’ Rahhal’ initiative and the recently launched Artificial Intelligence University. Prof El Kadhi gave several pieces of advice to students that are stuck in the classical education system, and for professionals who are willing to reinvent themselves, to become a smart citizens and integrate with smart cities and future jobs of 2040.