The Benefits and Challenges of Student-Designed Learning

This article talks about the Science Leadership Academy (SLA) in America attempting a new way for students to learn: they were to try to "design their own learning". Students had freedom to pursue topics they were passionate about, but had to motivate themselves to complete their tasks without the firm deadlines and rubrics that had become standard to them. 

I think that this method would be beneficial to Singapore students as it can broaden our perspectives. Some SLA students researched on gender stereotyping while a few African-American students chose to work on "colorism". They needed to do field research like conducting surveys from their neighbourhood. To be able to come up with a research topic and present our findings, we would need to identify a problem or trend in society that interests us, mainly by reading up on current affairs or observing trends in our daily lives. Through the research, we need to put ourselves in others' shoes to understand their problems, developing a stronger sense of empathy, as well as social awareness. This learning experience would expose us beyond what we learn in school and allow us to gain insights into the society, broadening our perspectives. 

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