Special Issue "Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Processing in Future-Focused Learning (FFL)"

A special issue of Journal of Intelligence (ISSN 2079-3200).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Jihyun Lee
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Education, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia
Interests: academic achievement; academic intelligence; academic interest
Prof. Dr. Lazar Stankov
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Psychology, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
Interests: intelligence; academic achivement; cross-cultural psychology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

A concept of “21st century skills” was coined at the turn of the 21st century, by business sectors with a belief that the types of skills and knoweldge that are necessary to enhance workforce readiness for future generations would differ from those of the previous years. The idea of 21st century skills quickly spread to education sectors, who then embraced the challenge of identifying major characteristics and attributes of “successful” individuals in the new era. It was based on a view that traditional skills, knowledge, and even intelligence that are firmly rooted in 3Rs, i.e., reading, writing, and arithmatics, would take less importance in development of future societies. There was a sense of urgency to define, understand, and teach young generations according to a new learning and cognitive model that can illustrate how to secure academic and economic success. Soft skills such as collaboration, time management, enthusiasm, perseverance, open-mindedness, self-monitoring and self-awareness were advocated, while other skills that are more closely related to cognitive abilities such as  metacognition, creativity, critical thinking and collective problem-solving skills became more welcome than ever.

Moving forward, we are now into almost 20 years of the 21st century. In recognizing the renewed dedication to the understanding of the desired skill sets of future generations, another new term, “future-focused learning (FFL)”, has been coined. While the FFL concept has not been formally defined as yet, it can be assumed that it should start by critically reviewing whether academia and business sectors have successfully identified the “21st century skills” to satisfy the needs of economic and educational growth.

It is understood that the main components of FFL include the focus on learning process, emphasis on cultural context of learning, and tackling automatization issues and the need to adapt to rapidly changing technology-infused environments. Meanwhile, the emphasis on complex problems, real-world application, creativity, critical thinking, personalized learning, and practice of learning and teaching by units that combine multiple subjects (e.g., a subject called STEAM which is Arts-infused STEM subjects) continues to be relevant for FFL.

Under the broad theme of future-focused learning (FFL), we invite submissions that address either one or more than one of the following issues:

(1)   Critical review of the 21st century skills in relationship to cognitive and non-cognitive processing

(2)   New concept/construct development for the future-focused learning (FFL) that would impact education, economic growth and social structures

(3)   Future-focused learning (FFL) in relationship to intelligence

Both review papers and empirical papers will be welcome.

Prof. Dr. Jihyun Lee
Prof. Dr. Lazar Stankov
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Intelligence is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • future-focused learning (FFL)
  • 21st century skills
  • 21st century learning
  • soft skills
  • collaborative learning
  • time management
  • self-monitoring and self-awareness
  • metacognition
  • creativity
  • collective problem-solving skills
  • critical thinking skills
  • cross-subject learning

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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Article
Interdisciplinary Learning in Mathematics and Science: Transfer of Learning for 21st Century Problem Solving at University
J. Intell. 2020, 8(3), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/jintelligence8030032 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2194
Abstract
Transfer of learning, the application of learning to different contexts over time, is important to all learning for development. As 21st century skills specifically aim to be “generic,” there is an assumption that they can be transferred from context to context. We investigate [...] Read more.
Transfer of learning, the application of learning to different contexts over time, is important to all learning for development. As 21st century skills specifically aim to be “generic,” there is an assumption that they can be transferred from context to context. We investigate the process of transfer in problem solving, with specific focus on mathematical problem solving tasks. Problem solving is highly valued in 21st century workplaces, where mathematical skills are also considered to be foundational in STEM and of paramount importance. This study examines the transfer of first semester mathematics learning to problem solving in second semester physics at university. We report on: (1) university students’ (n = 10) “think-aloud” accounts of the process of transfer; and (2) students’ (n = 10) and academics’ (n = 8) perspectives on transfer processes and problem solving. Think-aloud accounts show students’ recursive use of interpretation, integration, planning and execution thinking processes and highlight the meta-cognitive strategies used in transfer. Academics’ and students’ perspectives on transfer show disparities. Understanding these perspectives is important to current initiatives to integrate and optimise 21st century learning within universities. We argue that renewed attention on the concept of transfer is needed if the generic aims of 21st century skills are to be understood and promoted. Full article
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Article
Imagine: Design for Creative Thinking, Learning, and Assessment in Schools
J. Intell. 2020, 8(2), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/jintelligence8020016 - 15 Apr 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3145
Abstract
Although not generally included in classroom activities of the past, cultivating creative thinking is considered one of the core strands in future-focused learning in schools. Learning focused on creative thinking is uncommon in school, mainly due to a lack of consensus on the [...] Read more.
Although not generally included in classroom activities of the past, cultivating creative thinking is considered one of the core strands in future-focused learning in schools. Learning focused on creative thinking is uncommon in school, mainly due to a lack of consensus on the definition of the creative thinking competency and a lack of effective methods designed for curriculum-embedded implementations of creative thinking learning and assessment in classrooms. This paper describes the development of a framework for formative assessments of creative thinking frameworks and provides considerations for the design of technology-enhanced learning and assessment in support of creative thinking competency in students. Task models described in the paper aimed to cultivate creative thinking and elicit evidence on competency development in students. Future directions for the development and validation of learning and assessment approaches are discussed. Full article
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Review

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Review
We Can Boost IQ: Revisiting Kvashchev’s Experiment
J. Intell. 2020, 8(4), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/jintelligence8040041 - 26 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3455
Abstract
This paper examined the effects of training in creative problem-solving on intelligence. We revisited Stankov’s report on the outcomes of an experiment carried out by R. Kvashchev in former Yugoslavia that reported an IQ increase of seven points, on average, across 28 tests [...] Read more.
This paper examined the effects of training in creative problem-solving on intelligence. We revisited Stankov’s report on the outcomes of an experiment carried out by R. Kvashchev in former Yugoslavia that reported an IQ increase of seven points, on average, across 28 tests of intelligence. We argue that previous analyses were based on a conservative analytic approach and failed to take into account the reductions in the IQ test variances at the end of the three-years’ training. When standard deviations of the initial test and 2nd retest were pooled in the calculation of the effect sizes, the experimental group’s performance was 10 IQ points higher on average than that of the control group. Further, with the properly defined measures of fluid and crystallized intelligence, the experimental group showed a 15 IQ points higher increase than the control group. We concluded that prolonged intensive training in creative problem-solving can lead to substantial and positive effects on intelligence during late adolescence (ages 18–19). Full article
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