A central question about the future is whether formal and informal learning structures will evolve to meet the changing needs of people who wish to fulfill the workplace expectations of the future. Pew Research Center and Elon’s Imagining the Internet Center conducted a large-scale canvassing of technologists, scholars, practitioners, strategic thinkers and education leaders in the summer of 2016, asking them to weigh in on the likely future of workplace training.
Some 1,408 responded to the following question, sharing their expectations about what is likely to evolve by 2026:
In the next 10 years, do you think we will see the emergence of new educational and training programs that can successfully train large numbers of workers in the skills they will need to perform the jobs of the future?
Participants were asked to explain their answers and offered the following prompts to consider:
- What are the most important skills needed to succeed in the workforce of the future?
- Which of these skills can be taught effectively via online systems – especially those that are self-directed – and other nontraditional settings?
- Which skills will be most difficult to teach at scale?
- Will employers be accepting of applicants who rely on new types of credentialing systems, or will they be viewed as less qualified than those who have attended traditional four-year and graduate programs?