Learning at SkilStak

You will learn the same material customized to your specific learning style and interests. We keep track of everything in your codeboard and codebook.

Unfortunately, many of us are not intuitively familiar with how we learn best probably because most traditional systems of learning do not encourage us to discover what that is.

Here is an overview of how that will happen:

  1. Meet to assess your interests, resource, goals, and limiters.
  2. Write down your individual development plan.
  3. Learn to really use a computer.
  4. Learn to learn and become a modern technologist.
  5. Learn applications and operations.
  6. Earn your capstone full-stack engineer title.
  7. Go out and save the world!

What should I learn?

I recommend everyone follow the path to full-stack engineer outlined above but the specifics are up to you. Maybe you want to just learn to code and make your own games and apps. Maybe you just want to learn how to run your own server. Maybe you really want to learn Jedi hacking skills (sorry no Sith training here).

Full-stack engineer is a capstone title. It means you have built a good foundation—including learning how to learn—and then mastered both applications developement and systems operations and can have something substantial to show for it proving you know it without the need for any sort of grade or piece of paper. Your work and knowledge are proof enough. Becoming a true full-stack engineer will take 1000s of hours including many doing research, coding, and building things on your own.

Titles are one way I organize content into the 5TQ Taxonomy so that it is modularly accessible depending on what people need to learn and how.

How will I learn?

Discere Faciendo. Learn by doing.

We don't do anything particularly ground-breaking at SkilStak. We work hard, learning the same way people have always learned, by reading and listening enough to get started on something and then mastering it by doing it a lot.

Practice, Papers, Play

Learning can be categorized into skills, knowledge, and abilities.

  • Practice and projects help you master skills.
  • Papers and presentations help you understand knowledge.
  • Playing and participating help you gain abilities.

One-On-One

... or two. Learning has always been best in person, preferably when the one mentoring has already learned what the other seeks. This guru or master model has served humanity effectively since humans began learning.

Everyone gets an individual learning log where we collaborate on your learning goals.

Identifying

Tech requires constantly identifying new things. Look away for a month and you are likely to miss a significant change that could affect all your learning. Learning how to identify learning opportunities and technologies is as important as learning any skill involving that technology.

Researching

Once you have identified a technology that may be interesting and relevant you need to research it enough to make some decisions about it:

  • Is this for me?
  • Is this relevant today?
  • How could this be useful?
  • Can I get a job doing this?
  • Could I use this to gain a competitive advantage?
  • How does this affect the world?

To keep up with the intense pace of change required for tech learning SkilStak started the SOIL initiative to seek collaboration on practices and a content standard that can keep up by approaching knowledge as source.

Curating

After researching its time to summarize and broadcast what you have learned to your peers or the public. Curating primarily helps you get a handle on what is going on and where you fit in, but it is also a valuable contribution to others as you provide the results and how you arrived at them to others.

Curating also involves isolating and filtering. You have to arrive at just the stuff that matters to you. The hardest part of being a technologist is not doing everything. You simply cannot keep up if you do.

What's Your Pace? Framework fatigue is a term specifically from the web development world because major revisions frameworks—or even entire languages—can come out within months—even weeks—of each other. The pace of technology innovation is demanding, exhausting, and rewarding and is not for everyone. Therefore, we first help you establish your preferred pace.

Connecting

We help members make contact with local tech companies and other professional mentors. We also show members how to create a personal learning network and why.

We attend technology conferences and meetups such as the Davidson Machine Learning group.