Before starting ConsciousEd, we asked ourselves “what is the biggest problem in the world?” For us it’s fixing education. Because education is the lever that moves all other levers. If you give someone the right skills and mindset, there’s no limit to what they could achieve. They could be the next Bill Gates or Elon Musk.
How much of what you learned at university or school do you still remember or use in your current job or personal life? Our bet is not much.
Yet, the skills and knowledge we most need in the workplace and in life aren’t taught in universities.
ConsciousEd is building a university for life skills. Skills like effective communication, emotional intelligence, resilience, self-knowledge, people management, money management, sales and entrepreneurship.
Our content and curriculum will be open source and community-driven; like a Wikipedia for life skills.
That’s why we’re asking for your contributions to ConsciousEd. We want to share your unique life experience, personal wisdom, and advice with the world.
Now you might be thinking: “surely there are already a tonne of books and resources on the internet? What more could I have to offer?”
The Problem with Education
Most books, articles and educational resources are too theoretical right now. There aren’t enough actionable ideas, or instructions that explain how we can apply theory to improve our lives, the community and the wider world.
For example, we learn calculus in high school, but we don’t learn about how calculus can be used in real-world applications, like engineering, biology and economics. What’s the point of learning calculus if we don’t learn how to use it?
Steve Jobs tells us to “do what you love”. Oscar Wilde tells us to “be yourself, because everyone else is already taken”. But how exactly do we figure out what it is that we love to do? What does it actually mean to be yourself?
What we need are detailed instructions, stories and examples of how other people have figured out who they are, and what they’ve been able to do with their lives.
This is where you can help: by sharing your story, the principles that have helped you in your life and explaining exactly what you did to succeed.
The Five Pillars of ConsciousEd
ConsciousEd’s content aims to be:
- Useful & directly actionable. Every article should contain an idea the reader could go and execute on right now to make their life better.
- Specific & detailed. Step by step instructions on how to achieve a result. We don’t need any more high-level, abstract theory-crafting.
- Grounded in real-life examples. Detailed examples of how a principle has been applied, and stories of how other people have done it before.
- Field-tested. Principles and ideas that our contributors have also personally applied, tested and achieved results with.
- Entertaining to read.
After we’ve created our curriculum for life skills, we will create a social network for learning. You can join study groups on any topic, find accountability partners, do group assignments, and discuss ideas in chat rooms.
We will run classes via video conference. Student-driven classes where students will teach each other, discuss challenges and share feedback.
We will organize real-world, community-run study groups, and create a global learning community.
Take church for example: people come together to learn about God, and find a deeper sense of meaning and purpose to life. Church is a place where you can be open and vulnerable, talk about your life problems and ask other people for their advice.
But why can’t we have a community that is as intimate as church but independent from religion, open to everyone, and purely focused on learning how to live a better life? That’s what ConsciousEd aims to be.
Founder: Rob Liu is a 500 Startups and Startmate alumnus and founder of Contactout.com, an email search engine, and Dealsextra.com.au, a coupon site.
Head of Growth: Patrick Chen was a research analyst at Morgan Stanley, covering the Australian healthcare sector. Now he brings his natural intellectual curiosity and passion for learning to help others pick up hard lessons, the easy way.
Contributor: Dr. Samar Habib is a writer, researcher and scholar. She has given two TEDx talks, lectured at some of the best universities in the world, and written several books.
Contributor: Ari Yeganeh is a data scientist specialising in AI. He has worked at Ebay and Quantium.
Cartoonist: Casey Chapman is a freelance artist specializing in sequential art.