Future Institute of Technology carries multiple development expectations
[Bright Times Review]
The Ministry of Education recently announced the list of the first batch of colleges and universities to build the Institute of Technology of the Future. 12 universities including Peking University, Tsinghua University, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and Tianjin University are among them. This means that the construction of the Future Institute of Technology, which started in May 2020, has taken a crucial step.
The construction of the Institute of Technology of the Future was proposed under the new domestic and international situation, aiming at cutting-edge, revolutionary, and disruptive technologies in the next 10 to 15 years. It is planned to cultivate forward-looking technologies that can lead future development through this construction. Leading talent in innovation. This action carries multiple expectations such as promoting the transformation and upgrading of "Made in China" and building a powerful country in higher education.
Regarding how to run the Technical College of the Future, it has been a key issue for discussion since the college application process. The first question to be focused is: Will future technologies appear in the form of disciplines? In fact, new technologies such as chips have already broken through the boundaries and forms of the original disciplines. Although China has adapted to this change and set up interdisciplinary disciplines in integrated circuit science, it still has not been able to get out of the discipline model. "Discipline" has not been produced for a long time. In the history of human cognition, it is only a way of understanding in a specific period. It is impossible to accommodate all kinds of knowledge. It may be more in line with the reality of studying complex objects and new technologies to move toward integration and not stay in interdisciplinary. need. Therefore, in terms of organizational form, it is necessary to start with the organizational reform of the college and form an integrated research team in a brand-new way.
The current construction of the Institute of Technology of the Future has the consideration of responding to the development of Chinese society and solving new technical problems. From the perspective of the history of the generation and development of new human technologies, new technologies need to be based on new science to produce and maintain sustainable development. Compared with technology, the state of development of science is relatively weak. It is precisely because of this that in the process of building the Institute of Technology of the Future, we should not just focus on technology and ignore the development of the scientific level. What we need is the Institute of Technology of the Future with a solid foundation in science and science.
The more important question is, is the main goal of future technical colleges to produce new technologies as soon as possible, or to cultivate people who can invent and create new technologies in the future? These two aspects are mentioned in related documents such as the future technical college construction guidelines, but the author believes that there is still a need for further clarification of its primary, secondary and internal logic.
Historical experience shows that cultivating people who can invent new technologies is more valuable than creating a certain technology. In the current university management and evaluation system, the emphasis on technology, patents, and topics is generally higher than that of training talents. In the future, the technical college must get rid of path dependence and cannot narrow itself as the development and research institute of future technology. It must adhere to the principle of educating people and integrate teaching, learning, and doing, so as to cultivate talents with the ability to invent and create. Construction goals. We must try our best to avoid the "technology-only" theory and place technology in an inappropriate position above humans. Instead, we should focus on the long-term and focus on cultivating people with good future technological literacy.
To achieve the goal of cultivating people in the Technical College of the Future, to be more precise, cultivating minors in the unknown environment of the future world requires special attention to cultivating students' creative consciousness and ability in specific conditions and environments. And this is also a major challenge for colleges and universities in the cultivation of students. In the teaching and training of the future technical colleges, it is necessary to focus on improving students' creative ability and provide conditions for them to be interested in scientific and technological inventions and creations, and have actions and even effects. Only by solving the problem of human growth can the prosperity and sustainable development of future technology be realized. Otherwise, it is possible that the academy as an entity has been established, but the expected goals have not been achieved as scheduled.
(Author: Chu Zhaohui, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Educational Sciences)