I like to state, that the future of education is the history of education. Bruce Sterling writes in his visionary book entitled Shaping Things, that “the future composts today“. When looking at the models of the current, you will see them in a mutated form in the future. Therefore, much of change is incremental in the core. What is hard, is to articulate what course would future take. Studying the future is to study multiple futures. What we can do for a certain, is to shape the future through our actions today.
Researching the history of the future is the same as researching the history of the past: you can only interpret it by looking and recognizing the signs you find in the current. Explorers of the future extrapolate weak or strong signals today. Explorers of the past go through archives and ruins today. In other words, both are studied by researching the now.
When formulating any meaningful paths to the future of education, we have to research the now, understand the past and see what patterns might recur in the future. George Siemens does a very good job with this in his talk about a World Without Courses. Got the link from Eric Davidove, check it out.