Zener Broadcasting in Education – Part III

Posted on: June 4, 2014 by Mike Smith

Like all good miniseries, we know when to call it a day. If you missed the first two posts you can go back in time here and here.

So I conclude with some brief observations on the personal nature of education throughout our lives and close by inventing another new word. I hope you like it.

Educating Me

Let’s get personal. Whether using Twitter, Facebook, Google or whatever the next social platform will be, broadcasters need to engage with the individual. Not only in the wider context of knowing their customer but in the role of educator.

Life-long learning begins with a broadcaster relationship during the pre-schools phase, through school, higher education, corporate life and beyond. The broadcaster will be with us throughout our lives; they’ll know as much about us as anyone (or any other organisation). We trust our teachers, and our educating broadcasters also need to be trustworthy given the wealth of knowledge they have learnt about us.

Through this very personal relationship new opportunities will arise:

  • Understanding the individuals learning requirements will enable content to be tailored for them. We will no longer be simply putting a lecturer in front of a video camera and streaming it. New interactive video content will be dynamically linked to how the individual is progressing. A longer time will be spent, and to a deeper level, on topics that are not being understood.
  • Learning about the individuals’ preferences will also tailor learning without them specifically searching for a topic. Using social data to construct courses based on their learning patterns.
  • University courses will in the future be constructed around an individual’s learning capacity, rather than a rigid course timetable. This will be linked to the broadcasters’ library of on-demand content, not a fixed schedule.


A new world of learning is now being developed, enabled by Zener Broadcasting, making educational resources go further while opening up greater learning opportunities at every level, in every country. The design and delivery of educational programs are going through rapid and irreversible change. For new generations of “digital natives”, the creative use of digital media becomes integral to learning.

We are committed to ensuring that all people have the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in, and meet the challenges of a technology-led future. Atos makes clear and practical contributions to 21st-century learning. Examples include:

  • Digital learning and collaboration environments for teachers and students
  • Smart online examination systems
  • Digital content management for media-rich libraries
  • Student information and educational logistic systems
  • Identity, security and risk management

I have outlined a vision of the future where broadcasters re-engage with a lost generation in the way that they want to consume their content. Broadcasters know their audiences’ learning requirements in the wider context of their lives. They participate in a partner ecosystem, bringing their considerable experience in providing engaging, fun, educational content.

Broadcasters are experts at producing that content, they will play a pivotal role in the future efficient effective delivery of mass educational services.

We will use technological solutions more effectively to integrate and share broadcasters' assets with the services of third parties, both in the UK and globally, to develop a richer relationship with the audience.

Broadcasters will also play a key role not only as a content provider but as a facilitator in the expanding world of online learning, including and especially the growing use of Massive Open Online Courses. And that’s the future of “Educating”.

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About Mike Smith
Chief Technology Officer, Atos Distinguished Expert, Founding member of the Atos Scientific Community
Mike has been in the IT industry for over 20 years, designing and implementing complex infrastructures that underpin key Government and private sector solutions. Setting Atos technical strategy, researching new technologies and supporting the consulting and architect communities. Previously Mike has held technical and management positions in British Rail, Sema Group and Schlumberger. He has a daughter and a son, both keen on anything but technology. Mike's sporting passion rests with Test Match Special, and is jealous/proud of his son's Ice Hockey skills.

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