Archive for the ‘Learning Strategist’ Category

Mobile: What is mLearning, Really? Part 2

June 16, 2013

Read Part 1 of this article…

There is a new term in web development that is directly relevant to delivering content onto a mobile device. That term is “responsive web”. This is a design approach that makes use of flexible layouts, images, and uses Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to adjust the look and feel of the content depending on the device. It essentially solves the design problems that occur when viewing the same content on screens of different sizes.
Think of all the possible screen sizes that exist. What you don’t want to have to do is develop different content for each possible option.

  • Desktop monitors
  • Laptop screens
  • Tablets (iPad, iPad mini, Kindle Fire, Android Tablets, Windows Surface, and so on)
  • Smart Phones (iOS, Android, and hybrid size phone/tablet or “phablet”)

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Industry Tidbits

November 29, 2012

This blog post covers two items:
What is the most popular LMS and trends to watch for in 2013.

WHAT IS THE MOST POPULAR LMS?

According to a report from Capterra, Moodle is the most popular learning management system in the world.

 http://www.capterra.com/top-20-lms-software-solutions#.UJFvE45dgyC

The list, measured by total customers, active users and overall online presence, lists the top 10 most popular LMSs. Rankings are also broken down by academic and corporate users.

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Technique – Effectively Using Video

November 27, 2012

Research is proving that video is becoming more and more popular as a training tool. We are also seeing evidence that content retention is stronger from video than it is from just audio or text on the screen. With the newer rapid eLearning tools, such as Captivate 6, and camcorders on our devices and in tablets, it becomes very simple for any of us to create video.

However, as with any technique, just because something is easy to do doesn’t mean something is actually easy to do. Remember all the crazy transitions and animations in PowerPoint? Just because you have access to them doesn’t mean you should use them without a real purpose behind why you are using them.

Hollywood has been creating film and video for many decades and they know how to create effective productions (generally speaking). Let’s look to them as a model. The big key is to plan ahead and not just rush to shoot the video.

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Elearning – Project Tin Can Will Potentially Change Learning

November 16, 2012

Like much of today’s learning, 90% of learning events occur  outside an eLearning course or in an instructor-led classroom event. They occur in an informal environment. Project Tin Can, the next iteration of SCORM, can capture and track these informal items as learning events.

What makes Tin Can so unique? It goes beyond the types of data we receive from traditional eLearning. It allows you to track activities you may have previously thought weren’t trackable.

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News – Khan Academy Partners with Samsung

November 6, 2012

For those of you that are looking at mobile devices as a way to enhance your learning environments for you clients or employees, here is a little something to keep your eye on.

Khan Academy Partners with Samsung

I have written about Kahn Acacdemy in the past and its impact it is having on the K-12 education system in the US.

They just announced a new partnership with Samsung that will provide the Galaxy Note tablets as part of a pilot program to Mountain View Whisman School District in California. The tablets will ship with a pre-loaded Khan Academy app that provides direct access to their extensive library of instructional videos.

The electronic device market has truely affected how we access information and thus how we learn and collaborate. The logical next step in this progression is moving this technology and its capabilities to our education system and making it available as a tool for our teachers to better educate our youth for the next generation of careers.

 As a side note to this story, let’s clarify the picture a little for you. This story appeared this morning in USA Today: Shift to Mobile Devices Causes Concern. The crux of this story is about how the shift in internet access from the desktop to the mobile device has created a serious wave that many of the current tech companies are having issues keeping up with. For example, Dell, HP, Intel, and Microsoft are all behind the curve when it comes to mobile devices – they are rooted deeply in the desktop or laptop environment.  Google and Facebook were able to conquer the online web space…in a desktop environment. However, both these companies have a revenue model that is weighted heavily on selling online ads. When you move to the mobile device, the screens are so much smaller, that you can’t just fill the screen with ads and both these companies have apps that launch what you need without ads. Now, new tech companies may step in to fill this void and figure out how to actually make money in this new space.

Personally, I find it very interesting how mobile devices have been able to completely change the world we live in. In this author’s humble opinion, we are about to see a new tech boom, much like in the 90’s around the web and in the 2000’s around search and social media. My prediction – apps and connectivity to learning content. I am pretty sure I am not the first to say this though.

Webinars – Are we Due for a Redesign of Webinars?

September 9, 2012

We all have sat in or run a webinar. It might be WebEx, GoTo Meeting, LiveMeeting, or some other web conference tool. I bet you can describe the experience off the top of your head.

The event will last between 45 minutes and one hour. Half the registered attendees will show. Of those that participate, a large percentage of them will split their attention between what is being said, checking e-mail, working on a document, or surfing the internet. Much of the content will be a dry PowerPoint presentation. You might get lucky and have a poll or whiteboard involved.

  • Your organization probably uses webinars in one of these areas:
  • Compliance training – The goal is exposure to content
  • Blended Learning – This is usually a follow-up to a live or eLearning event
  • Corporate Communications – This usually allows opportunities for executives to interact with the workforce. This typically takes the form of a strategy change or a way to share more of the corporate culture.

As the economy has become worse, corporations looked for ways to cut travel costs. Today, in a distributed workforce, hosting and attending webinars is just a part of “how we do business”.

Here’s a novel idea…maybe we should consider redesigning how webinars work.

Let’s talk about a few ideas.

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Getting Connected – Leveraging Your Personal Learning Network (PLN)

August 2, 2012

If you have ever relied on our families, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances to grow your knowledge about the world, you have taken advantage of a Personal Learning Network (PLN). You have also used a PLN if you have used reference books, textbooks, television (CNN or MSN, for example) and radio stations (National Public Radio or BBC) , and professional and personal-interest magazines. And, more recently, we have been connecting with people and information through the digital realm via social media sites. The good news is that there is an ever-growing repertoire of applications that have taken content from the printed page, and have given voice to the ideas of people we have never had access to before. This enabling us to redesign our information experiences to suit our needs.

Part of our role as facilitators of learning is helping our learners learn to teach themselves. That is why modeling a learning lifestyle is one of the best things that we can offer our learners.

Harnessing these new technologies to create and grow our own PLNs is imperative for educators who want to stay connected to the changing world we are charged with introducing to our students.

PLNs provide access to sources of information that were not even available a few years ago. This now creates an information overload, which we are seeing every day. To our rescue come continually evolving technologies. They make it easier to capture and tame this overload.

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Presentation Skills – Present Like Steve Jobs

July 5, 2012

This is one skill we all need to have! We all need to be better at giving a presentation. So, if we are going to model someone’s style, learn from than the master himself – the late Steve Jobs.

This video speaks about wowing your audience, limiting images and text, adding a little flair, and the dramatic close.

It isn’t very long, so maybe you will find a tip or two to add to your personal presentation style.

Course Design – Becoming an eLearning Professional

July 5, 2012

As I was looking at videos, I found this video by Tom Kuhlmann, of Articulate. It is a longer video, but it addresses these items:

• Design an e-learning strategy based around available resources
• Get the most out of simple, practical e-learning projects
• Visually align course designs around learning objectives and content
• Apply rapid instructional design models to make courses more engaging and interactive