Re-thinking Traditional Education

Chris Ventura
15 December, 2016

Follow our journey to design a better, more holistic learning product that empowers people to focus on their passions.

Traditional education is broken

When we began this journey at Paper Plane, we set ourselves the challenge of creating a learning experience that considered the whole human being first and foremost. Our viewpoint was that the current status quo was not a model that had the best interests of the learners at heart and as it turns out, employers either:

  • Degree programs with limited flexibility,
  • Large student debt and no guarantee of a job at completion
  • A 3+ year, information retention journey devoid of practical application
  • Little exposure to soft skills necessary to be effective in the workplace
  • No focus on self-awareness

The social impacts of an education system that pressured and drained learners and didn’t deliver on its promises, are immeasurable – yet we intuitively understand the magnitude.

Recognising this we set ourselves the challenge of creating a better learning experience. We wanted to deliver a learning experience that felt authentic. We quickly realised that the only way to deliver on our core authenticity promise was to use real world projects. Over a two year period we brainstormed, tested, fell over and got back up again. Over this period of time we addressed many fundamental aspects of adult education, they are;

Realness – Real projects. Real experience

Our promise is that we will never ask a learner to sit a quiz or exam. We won’t assess students on a bell curve and we won’t ask learners to work on assignments. Everything we ask a learner to do is real. The projects are real, the companies who offer the project are real and the assessment is based on real world referrals and recommendations.


Give learners access to education that fits within the time constraints of modern life.

No more putting your life on hold for years in order to upskill or change careers. Digital plays a huge part by delivering content when and where it’s need it. We want to use technology not just to enhance the connection of learners to the content but also with each other.

Emotional Development

Dedicated coaching to support real behavioral change

We all know how we could or should be but without a framework of support many of us are destined to repeat the same patterns that hold us back from fulfilling our goals. This starts with providing a vessel to enhance introspection and self-awareness. Paper plane is the only educational product on the market that offers real one-on-one personal coaching as part of the experience.

Competitive Pricing

Learning at a fraction of the cost

A traditional post-grad degree can cost anywhere between $20,000 and $37,000*. Paper Plane aims to slash the cost of education by reducing the size of learning programs from one 4 year course to a series of 6-8 week projects. Aside from cost savings, delivering a program over 6-8 weeks allows learners to pivot and change their approach as they learn. We are not in the business of subtly forcing people to continue down a path they no longer have any inspiration for. This results in an experience which supports the flow of life and all the perfect imperfections it promises.

Holistic Learning

At launch, Paper Plane is focussed on delivering skills highly sought after by industry in the fields of UX Design, Digital Marketing and Product Management. What makes the Paper Plane approach unique in the market is that we also focus on teaching the softer skills that ensure you are able to apply your UX, Marketing or Product Management skills effectively in real-world scenarios. These include research, communication, leadership, mindfulness and empathy skills (just to name a few).

Each of our projects are structured using a design thinking framework because our learners work on real problems and real problems require real designed solutions. This is not simply a creative pursuit but a focus on designing elegant solutions to the problems of the world.

Learn to do what you love

We live in a time where many aspects of life are changing at an increasingly rapid pace. This introduces uncertainty and trepidation on how we can best prepare ourselves for a different world of tomorrow. Yet, whichever side of the political, climate or social spectrum you sit on – there is perhaps one thing we can all agree on – and that is, we can do better as a species when people are empowered to live their fullest lives. Education is fundamental to delivering on that promise. We need human beings to feel it is possible to go after their dreams, to be coached through the fears they hold, so they can spend larger portions of their time on this earth doing what they love. Our belief is that when people do what they love, they create businesses that impact the world around them in a meaningful way. We believe that when people do what they love they lead by example and inspire millions of people to do the same. We believe that when people do what they love, they’re families are healthier and their children learn the right habits. We believe that when people do what they love, the world can take a step closer equality and harmony for all.

Chris Ventura
15 December, 2016
Chris Ventura
15 December, 2016