The concept of The Fourth Industrial Revolution was presented in 2016 by Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, at the Davos conference in Switzerland, to designate the current era, characterised by a range of new technologies that are fusing the physical, digital and biological worlds. The most raised issue is the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on employment. The World Economic Forum estimates that with the improvements in automation, robotics and artificial intelligence, five million jobs will be eradicated in Europe by 2020 (World Economic Forum, 2016). No job, qualified or not, is immune to the impact of automation.
The unprecedented sophistication of technology and the integration of artificial intelligence will have an impact on several professional areas soon. While on the one hand jobs are disappearing, on the other hand, new opportunities will be created, especially for computer and technology specialists. According to Schwab (2016), the next five years are a critical period of transition. In this scenario, there is an excellent opportunity to invest in the training of adults for new job opportunities that will require knowledge about programming and robotics, and that allow their adaptation to a complex and ever-changing world.
Yet, in a world where the Internet is increasingly accessible and mobile, accessing, sharing and producing digital content have become routine activities. That is why citizens must have skills that enable them to use technologies that can bring new opportunities to their lives and, on the other hand, be prepared for increasingly complex living and working environments that focus on proficiency in learning and innovation skills that include critical thinking and problem solving, creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration (Schwab, 2016). Also, the need to continually explore new pedagogical practices in e-learning creates an opportunity to shape new content with new tools that stimulate creativity, enabling the adult learners to understand better the world in which they live in.
The partnership will design and develop an e-Learning course collaboratively on Mobile Robotics for adult learners, promoting the technical skills of trainers and learners and enabling them to develop new skills such as computational thinking and problem-solving. Then, the e-learning training course will be put into practice with Adult Education trainers.
Simultaneously, these adult education trainers will analyse their pedagogical practices, evaluate, reflect, and share with the partnership at the e-learning training sessions. During the training process, it is intended that the interventions in an educational context can be the object of collaborative reflections that respond to the objectives of the project.
At the end of this project, the partnership will have created an e-learning course on a virtual learning platform, a teaching and learning toolkit on Mobile Robotics for adult learners, with pedagogical activities and practices with innovative educational scenarios for trainers. Finally, the partnership will also have developed a book that expresses the experiences and the perceptions about the adult trainers pedagogical practices during the process.
Schwab, Klaus (2016). The Fourth Industrial Revolution. Geneva: World Economic Forum P21's Framework for 21st Century Learning. (S/D). 21st Century Skills: How can you prepare students for the new Global Economy? Retrieved from http://www.p21.org/our-work/p21-framework