Frank Bergdoll is a late-life academic, author, and instructor. He believes passionately that all learning is multi-modal and that it is critical to share knowledge sources as a part of a larger ecosystem.
Working to formalise his own knowledge has motivated him to enrol in a Master of Arts program as a possible gateway to a Ph.D.. Despite this decided effort towards an academic path, when asked what is next he laughingly tells us that he won’t rule out any possibilities.
In his world of post graduate teaching in technology hands on learning is critical. Students have to engage with tools in order to see how they fit personally. Frank touches on the software/technology world’s demo or die approach where if you can do something that is all that matters, not being enough to have your resume put forward. He discusses the idea that without academic accreditation most employers won’t even start a hiring conversation.
You won’t have conversations with people about what you can do, unless you have formal academics behind you.-Frank Bergdoll
He acknowledges that technology is changing knowledge faster than educational designers can work. When asked about tomorrow he sees the future of many programs becoming about just in time education and questions what you can do today that delivers value rather than waiting for design to catch up with today’s challenges and tools. Frank believes that learning is an ecosystem, so for himself and his students he works to focus on connections and the interconnectedness of learning and the acquisition of knowledge.
His desire is to teach students how to get information rather than memorising facts and this is critical to his style. You teach the foundation and you walk them through the process of experiencing it so that they can continue to grow throughout their careers. Leveraging tools is a big part of how he incorporates student first learning in his style where he says that we have all of these technologies that can elevate us on our effort to learn and quest to constantly improve ourselves. Frank takes his job very seriously in his desire to support them (students) in learning how to navigate the landscape.
His desire to curate learning and focus on his students has come through in his passion for eventual self realisation. Frank acts as a leader and advocate for learning as a lifestyle and for finding creative ways to incorporate the connections into real life. He is truly on a hero’s journey of #lifelonglearning and we can’t wait to see what is next.
This post is a part of the Academic Intent Series on Critically Drinking. Don’t forget to show some love submit a comment or review! Subscribe to get alerts on new episodes and more or find us on iTunes, Soundcloud, or Stitcher.