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Regular version of the site

Self-Development And Lifelong Learning

Georgy Yakovlev reflects on what these two notions mean.

Self-Development And Lifelong Learning

Continuous learning during your life and long-term interdisciplinary career seem to become common and well-known trends. You could hear theses about these features of modern society during your graduating or from the latest interview with a well-known and successful person. Based on this idea, professional lifelong self-development might become an obligatory requirement for all people. Or is it just another hyped info line?

What are the prerequisites for the birth of “lifelong learning” and self-development as its consequence? Firstly, there is a common view among business and education experts: main reason is an increased period of an economic activity of people. Modern person has a great amount of time to build his or her career due to the common raise of life span. During this period person highly likely might be bored or feel burnout and a great need in changes.

Secondly, the pace of changes in the professional environment plays a significant role. Sometimes employee’s qualification and labor might become wasted because of dramatic and frequent changes inside an each sphere. A huge and comprehensive digital transformation increases the pace of these changes. In addition, these changes (caused by digital progress and growth) evolve social mobility of an each person.

Finally, traditional and conventional view of life cycles (learning – working – pension) collapses and gives a way to a new vision. This vision was formed lately by chops and changes described before and by several reforms in main social institutes all around the world: relationship to marriage and family, life expectations and personal priorities etc.

These three reasons perform a modern approach to the self-development itself. Decade ago it could be a kind of entertainment and self-satisfaction for passionate people. But self-development becomes more well-known annually. Is it a point of current interest for students nowadays? To answer this question, we need to understand the real conditions of the labor market, the economy and its key participants.

Majority of experts and top-managers (they largely shape labor market conditions) says that now schools and universities should teach students this way of thinking. It is needed for sustainable development of society. For example, Svetlana Mironyuk (Head of Marketing and Business Development, PwC) says:

In the new economy, education is understood as incomplete and it becomes the engine of a career and a prerequisite for the possibility of various professional development scenarios.

In the context of global working processes automatization many largest employers also join this opinion of huge need in changing learning process and paradigm. For example, Ginni Rometty (Executive of IBM.) once stated:

To get ready for this paradigm shift companies have to focus on three things: retraining, hiring workers that don’t necessarily have a four-year college degree and rethinking how their pool of recruits may fit new job roles.

Society in general, as well as education and commercial employers in particular, should transform to painlessly go through this phase of changes. And in order to be successful and demanded specialist every person should abide by principles of “lifelong learning” and self-development. HSE gives its students such opportunities during the learning. But you should continue your learning process even after graduating, so don’t forget about Coursera, SkillBox and other platforms for thematic learning. We wish you to correctly set your own priorities, goals and achieve your goals in bright and shiny future.

Text by
Georgy Yakovlev