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How 21st-Century Skills are Creating Great Opportunities for Students as Entrepreneurs in Real-World Education technology has played a large role in the spreading of education – making the best education available to anybody, anywhere

By Madhu Agrawal

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18 years into the 21st century, one would expect this tag of 21st century skills to finally get old and worn out. Instead, it's sticking on stronger than ever - government initiatives in the US, the UAE and Singapore are requiring schools to ensure that they are developing 21st century skills for all their students.

The skills that we commonly refer to as 21st century skills - critical thinking, problem-solving, locating and analyzing information, effective communication and collaboration - are core skills which help any person stay one step ahead of the game. Truth be told, they have also been important throughout the history of mankind.

So what's all this fuss about now? And why should every student and parent care about them?

The key here is to create an entrepreneurial mindset- a critical mix of success-oriented attitude, of initiative, intelligent risk-taking, collaboration, and opportunity recognition, that helps one attain success with the right steps taken. In the current proactive market, where the winner gives it all out, one needs to harbor the right outlook, in order to attract accolades.

The Importance Of Being a Contributory Member to this Economy

Gone are the days of letting things happen to you- that age-old approach of taking things as they are handed over, is going through a sea of change. The current economic system values individuals that understand the importance of creating a positive disruption, to hoist the economy and personal development to a newer level. This is the era of go-getters, who are aware of their capabilities and use it for the greater good.

Entrepreneurship Needs More

Knowledge is power, to the greatest extent yet correct utilization of that knowledge is what is required. Bookish knowledge provides a solid platform but one has to transcend beyond that, to be considered as a lion amongst meerkats. For that, one needs to realize his/her potential and channelize it in the right direction. The ability to critically gauge the situation and come up with the best possible solution, in tandem to the working ethics of his employees and co-workers, is the hallmark of an adept entrepreneur- something that can be harnessed through critical life-skills.

Great Schools Have Always Emphasized These Skills

What has always stood out about great educational institutions is that they emphasize real-world learning for their students. Schools and colleges that use projects, experiential learning and other methods to help students connect their learning to the real world, have always produced students who are highly successful in the real world. Similarly, the PISA tests which are conducted worldwide every year, test students' critical thinking and problem-solving skills as a measure of how well the education system is preparing them for the future.

The 21st Century Brings Changes which Makes these Skills a Necessity for All

Think of how different the world looked when you were in school. Now, try and imagine what it will look like when your child finishes education 10 years from today and enters the world of work. Can you accurately predict what jobs will be trending then? What technologies will be prevalent and what will be obsolete?

There are Solutions Available Today which Make these Skills Accessible to All

Education technology has played a large role in the spreading of education - making the best education available to anybody, anywhere. This means that what used to be the classroom practice of excellent teachers in a few classrooms, is today available to anyone with an internet connection.

The biggest advantage is that these digital courses are cost-effective, suited to meet every learner's needs and provide a convenient bolt-on to the current education system. With the ease of availability of these solutions, equipping students with these crucial skills is now straightforward and achievable.


Lastly, the right set of skill set will enhance the faculties of the student in order to prepare him for greater things.

Madhu Agrawal

Co-Founder, Callido Learning LLP

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