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DESIGN THINKING IN EDUCATION By Rex R. Lor (Note: The following article is part of a larger research study entitled Design Thinking in Education: A Critical Review of Literature) One of the biggest challenges for education is how to prepare the students for a world that doesn’t yet exist. With the exponential advances in technology coupled with the rapid “shrinking” of the world through globalization, the challenge of future-proofing education is both a challenge that needs to be solved. Bruton (2010) argued that there is a need for this shift due to the world becoming an information society with tech-savvy students who learn more by absorption and experience than by reading and lecture. Leading the global initiative is the Partnership for 21 st Century Skills (P21) focusing their efforts on the national college and career preparation conversation. P21 has played an active and crucial role in guiding education policy by building an alliance of future-thinking individuals to provide the framework of the 21 st Century Skills. Now becoming a global movement, its model is now widely recognized for integrating 21 st century skills into the core subjects of English, Mathematics, Science, Geography, Social Studies, Language and the Arts (Mishra & Kereluik, 2011). Proponents of this movement asserted that education should be more responsive to the changes brought about by globalization and technology providing for services that can prepare the students to make relevant and sustained contributions to the future society (Ananiadou & Claro, 2009, Kereluik, et al, 2013;
Laguardia & Pearl, 2009; Norris, et. al, 2012; Rutkowski, et al, 2011; Trilling and Hood, 1999). In the Philippines, the P21 21 st century skills model has been integrated in the K-12 education reform agenda through the Department of Education’s (DepEd) National Educational Testing and Research Center (NETRC). According to the Assessment, Curriculum and Technology Research Centre (ACTRC) (2015), a collaboration of the DepEd and the Assessment Research Centre of the University of Melbourne (UM-ARC), “the overarching aim of the project is to cater for the Filipino student in terms of the needs and conditions of education and employment in the Philippines.” Central to the framework borne out of the collaboration between DepEd- NETRC and the UM-ARC are the threefold foci on: 1) Information, Media & Technology; 2) Learning and Innovation; and, 3) Communication. This framework is reminiscent of the P21 Model where overarching themes in methodology focus on critical and creative thinking, problem solving, innovation and collaboration. With this is the need to adopt a teaching methodology that supports the implementation of 21 st Century Learning, specifically in teaching creativity and innovation and integrating technology in the context of collaboration.

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