Context: The Functionalist Approach to the 4th Industrial Revolution
The 4th Industrial Revolution can be synthetically defined as the “revolution of adaptive business processes”, which requires using a functionalist approach. Adaptability requires managing the functionality of business processes to be able to integrate different people, technologies, processes, systems, objects, and tools.
Adaptive solutions can only be managed by structured flexible processes with a high level of productivity and quality. Adaptability requires managing the functionality of business processes. It is based on the concepts and fundamentals of the business functions which allow managing the adaptability of business processes, enhance customer orientation, foster growth, and increase profitability. The functionalist approach to business is a must to take advantage of the 4th Industrial Revolution.
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The Unicist In-House Universities were developed to introduce the use of the unicist functionalist approach in organizations. They are for professionals who work in organizations and need to exceed the operationality and manage the functionality of processes.
The functionalist approach exceeds but includes the operational approach and increases notoriously the effectiveness and adaptability of work processes. Unicist In-House Universities generate positive cash-flow for the organizations they work in, based on the solutions that are developed.
The Functionalist Approach to Education
The unicist functionalist education model was developed to manage functionalist learning in the field of social, economic, and business behavior. It is based on the discovery of the unicist ontology of human learning in adaptive environments that allowed defining the functionality of this process.
Functionalist education is for people who already have the professional knowledge to manage the operational aspects in a specific field and need to access the functionality of processes. It requires to exceed the empirical aspects of activities to introduce a functionalist approach.
Action driven Learning
The unicist functionalist education is focused on enhancing the efficacy of people in their field of activities by managing the functionality of processes. This level of education is focused on two different fields of activity: specialization and research. Both aspects imply that the functionalist education needs to be based on the generation of value using the knowledge the participants acquire.
Medical residencies are a paradigmatic example of specialization driven (postgraduate) education. Their learning process is developed in teaching hospitals and is focused on the cure of real patients. On the other hand, applied physics is an example of research driven functionalist (postgraduate) education, which requires developing research works that produce measurable results.
In both cases the learning process is driven by the consequences of the actions of the learners. These consequences allow installing knowledge in the procedural, semantic and episodic long-term memory of individuals.
Pilot tests trigger Social, Economic and Business Learning
The driver of functionalist learning is the self-criticism of the participants. Self-criticism is based on generating spontaneous amending actions based on the feedback of the consequences of the decisions made by the learners. The postgraduate learning process in the social, economic, and business fields is driven by the use of pilot-tests that require knowing the functionality of processes.
The knowledge of operationality does not suffice, because it only allows developing trial and error processes which do not allow learning. The knowledge of the functionality provides the information of the basis of the solutions that are being tested and allows learning from them.
Three different types of pilot tests can be found in the field of social, economic and business education:
- Pilot tests to confirm the functionality of a solution.
- Destructive tests to extend the application of a solution to adjacent segments until the limits of its functionality were found.
- Non-destructive tests to evaluate the quantitative confirmation of a solution within the limits of its applicability.
Pilot tests make the delivery of value possible. Therefore, people who learn to generate value to others tend naturally towards testing the value they deliver, while people who learn to appropriate value avoid testing the results and build the necessary fallacies to enhance their self-esteem. Pilot tests imply spontaneous self-criticism to enhance self-esteem.
Self-criticism in education is the natural behavior of people who are focused on adding value. People who are driven by a value earning attitude are naturally driven by criticism, because it allows them to feel superior by blaming others for the lack of results.
Conclusion – Reflection Driven Learning
The education of the Unicist Corporate University is driven by the use of a functionalist approach to develop real solutions that are sustained by pilot tests, destructive tests, and non-destructive tests. These tests are the input to reflection processes that allow storing meaningful knowledge in the long-term memory of the learners.
The use of the unicist ontology of learning processes and the ontology of the problems that are being solved allow managing the levels of applications the participants can solve.
This knowledge sustains the design and application of pilot tests, destructive tests, and non-destructive tests to drive the learning processes. The development of pilot tests is full responsibility of the participants. It requires managing the functionality of the processes that are being built.
The activity of professors is simplified using DidactiBots, based on unicist fundamentals-based AI, to guide the learning of the participants, which is triggered by the use of pilot tests, destructive tests and non-destructive tests to generate solutions.
Basically, action-reflection-action drives the learning processes of participants. These actions are in fact the previously described pilot tests. In this context, the reflection processes are sustained by self-criticism which, on the one hand, allows learning from the feedback and, on the other hand, installs a meaningful knowledge in the long-term memory of the learners.