Dr. Yong Zhao is an internationally known scholar, author, and speaker. His works focus on the implications of globalization and technology on education. He has designed schools that cultivate global competence, developed computer games for language learning, and founded research and development institutions to explore innovative education models. He has published over 100 articles and 20 books, including Catching Up or Leading the Way: American Education in the Age of Globalization and World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students. He is a recipient of the Early Career Award from the American Educational Research Association and was named one of the 2012 10 most influential people in educational technology by the Tech & Learn Magazine. He is an elected fellow of the International Academy for Education.
He currently serves as the Presidential Chair and Associate Dean for Global Education in the College of Education, University of Oregon, where he is also Weinman Professor of Technology and Professor in the Department of Educational Measurement, Policy, and Leadership.
Until December, 2010, Yong Zhao was University Distinguished Professor at the College of Education, Michigan State University, where he also served as the founding director of the Center for Teaching and Technology, executive director of the Confucius Institute, as well as the US-China Center for Research on Educational Excellence.
Zhao was born in China’s Sichuan Province. He received his B.A. in English Language Education from Sichuan Institute of Foreign Languages in Chongqing, China in 1986. After teaching English in China for six years, he came to Linfield College as a visiting scholar in 1992. He then began his graduate studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1993. He received his A.M. in Education in 1994 and Ph.D. in 1996. He joined the faculty at MSU in 1996 after working as the Language Center Coordinator at Willamette University and a language specialist at Hamilton College.
This book will change the debate about what’s wrong and what’s right with American education and where it should be going. Based on his own experience as a student in China and as a parent of children attending school in the United States, Zhao skewers conventional wisdom while setting straight the recent history and current state of US schools. To make his case, Zhao explains:
- Why the perceived weaknesses of American education are actually its strengths.
- How reform proponents, business executives, and politicians have misjudged American education.
- Why China and other nations in Asia are actually reforming their systems to be more like their American counterparts.
- What really matters for an education system and what really counts as educational excellence.
With an extraordinary command of facts and thought leadership, Zhao describes how schools have to keep pace with a world that is being dramatically transformed by globalization, the “death of distance,” and digital technology. Instead of falling in line with mandates for standardization, his prescription is for educators to
- Expand the definition of success beyond math and reading test scores.
- Personalize schooling so that every student has opportunity to learn.
- View schools as enterprises that embrace globalization and digital technology.
In the new global economy, the jobs that exist now might not exist by the time today's students enter the workplace. To succeed in this ever-changing world, students need to be able to think like entrepreneurs: resourceful, flexible, creative, and global.
Researcher and Professor Yong Zhao unlocks the secrets to cultivating independent thinkers who are willing and able to use their learning differently to create jobs and contribute positively to the globalized society. World Class Learners presents concepts that teachers, administrators and even parents can implement immediately, including how to:
- Understand the entrepreneurial spirit and harness it
- Foster student autonomy and leadership
- Champion inventive learners with necessary resources
- Develop global partners and resources
With the liberty to make meaningful decisions and explore nontraditional learning opportunities, today’s students will develop into tomorrow's global entrepreneurs.