Rapid eLearning … Am I too late?

January 26, 2009 Leave a comment

At my practice lead’s request, I’m doing some research this week on rapid elearning and content conversion. Similarities. Differences. Best (better) practices. Tools. Reading Tom Kuhlmann‘s blog is fabulous. It also makes me cringe and look over my shoulder … I once strongly believed all five of his myths about rapid elearning.

I’m big enough to admit when I’m wrong. I’m running after the train ready to jump on… hope I’m not too late!

I’m getting it. I’m seeing the benefits to rapid elearning and how it can complement an overall learing solution. I’m also wondering how it compares to a “traditional” interactive elearning course and where it’s an improvement on straight-up content conversion.

And… I’m excited… back to the research!

Categories: elearning Tags: ,

Predictions for Learning in 2009

January 15, 2009 2 comments

This month’s big question is on predictions…. appropriate for the start of a new year. We’re being asked:

  • What are your biggest challenges for this upcoming year?
  • What are your major plans for the year?
  • What predictions do you have for the year?

Such hard questions so early in the year.

Challenge: Same as always – challenging clients, SMEs with a lack of confidence in their learners, fear, difficult content, technology + the current state of the economy and all that brings us 😦

Plans: I’m excited about this year. I’m going to tackle the challenges the same way I always do… one day at a time, one challenge at a time. I am planning on immersing myself in virtual worlds again… after stepping sideways from that for a year. And, I’d like to start getting my peers engaged in the possibilities of social learning.

Predictions: I don’t really like making predictions. I prefer plans. I can act on a plan. That’s my prediction for the year I guess… a lot of plans 🙂

Categories: Uncategorized

Social Learning Question of the Day

January 6, 2009 Leave a comment

Kevin Jones has started a nice little experiment he’s coined SLQOTD – the social learning question of the day. It’s essentially a conversation in twitter – with a new topic each day.

Kevin’s kindly summarized the December conversations in a downloadable e-book.

Categories: learning, learning2.0

2009 – Ready or not! Here I come!

January 5, 2009 Leave a comment

I love the first two weeks of the new year – it’s such a positive time of year. Everyone is making resolutions, plans, and predictions.

I rarely make my own resolutions on January 1… why bother when I’ll likely break it within a week. But for some reason, this year is different.

I started making a mental list of what I want to continue from last year and what I want to do differently. So hear it is. Watch out 2009, I’m charging forward!

This year I will:

  • Address my career progression actively by taking action on my 3 year plan
  • Run at least 3 times per week
  • Establish a plan to build base knowledge on the technical aspects of my job – LMS integration/issues, bandwidth, non-LMS solutions
  • Stop complaining – if I’m not happy, I will act. If I’m happy, I’ll shout it from the rooftops- or at least murmur it quietly to those around me.
  • Blog at least once per week … here…
  • Find a creative outlet – drawing class? acting class? not sure – but do it by February
  • Spend 1-2 weeks volunteering abroad again

With the exception of one or two bullet points… all of my resolutions are “lifestyle” changes. I’ve got the support of my friends and family so it’s on me now to deliver! I think I’m up for the challenge

What I learned about learning… and myself… in 2008

December 22, 2008 Leave a comment

This month’s big question is about what we as learning professionals learned about learning this past year (2008). I think I’ve learned a lot, like:

  • It doesn’t have to be Second Life to be immersive and engaging.
  • The Wow factor for Second Life wore off. I like it, but I’m not engaged by it anymore.
  • The staying power or social & peer-to-peer learning is more and more obvious
  • eLearning is still ok and useful – formal learning has a place in workplace learning
  • I’m ok with not using the fancy words when talking about workplace learning… I’m much better about being straightforward and using words and explanations that my clients understand (without an additional explanation to explain the explanation)
  • We’re boring (I didn’t say this… but I agree with it)… Instructional designers often take it to the boring level by focusing on the structures and formality of what they learned in grad school and not focusing on what the person sitting in this course needs to do at the end of it

I think we (as learning professionals) spend a lot of time making it complicated to justify our positions/existence/PhD or masters degree. And the complexity & rigor is necessary to create a learning environment that’s effective. But I also think we lose some of the wonder of learning by focusing on the prescribed methods that were rammed down our throats in the past. In 2009 I’m planning on spending a little more time looking for that wonder that I’ve lost in the past.

One Life Experience

October 27, 2008 Leave a comment

Cross post from inside IBM.

Sunday morning my husband and I participated in World Vision’s One Life Experience at the Calgary Women’s Show. IBM provided the kiosks (used at the end of the tour for feedback) so Calgary IBMers had the opportunity to go through the experience before the show opened on Sunday.

The One Life Experience lets you… Step into the life of one of four children living in Africa and gain a new perspective on one of the greatest humanitarian crises of our time: HIV and AIDS.”

Each participant is given an ipod with a different child’s story, which is narrated by Helene, but also presented from the child’s perspective. Olivia’s experience of contracting HIV after being raped and then passing it to her daughter was horrific and terrifying.

I was excited to attend this event for two reasons – curiosity and interest in the subject… but also because I’m focused on learning professionally – the use of story, personal experience, shock, fear, horror, hope, and success all contributed to making this an amazing learning experience. I was immediately engaged.

  • I was put into the situation the child physically – the tour is a 2000 square foot replica of the environment these children lived in
  • I was immersed in the experience – at one point I was asked to sit in the health clinic (as Olivia, the child I was following) to wait for my HIV results. I received the results from the nurse and then listened to Olivia describe how she felt, the stigma of having HIV in Malawi, and how she’d treated others with HIV in the past. I felt sick to my stomach.
  • I was asked to reflect – at the end of the tour I had the opportunity to pass along my thoughts and ideas of the tour. it was part feedback and part reaction to the exhibit.

I was wowed. And horrified. And inspired.

There are five touring One Life Experience exhibits in the US and one that tours Canada (schedule). If you get the chance to go, I highly recommend it.

To learn list

September 9, 2008 Leave a comment

The big question for September has branched out to our own learning as learning professionals. Essentially, we’ve been asked to share our “to learn” lists. The idea put forth in the question is that we should each have a to learn list that is of equal priority as a to do list.

Um… ok… I’ll try telling that to my clients 🙂

I don’t have a “to learn” list, but I do have a “to experience” list.

In my life I want to experience:

  • Learning a new language while I live in a country that speaks that language
  • Volunteering for a living rather than working
  • Surfing
  • Working as a chef
  • Retirement 🙂

In my work I want to experience:

  • Designing a course that makes me go “wow!”
  • A client that’s excited about collaborative learning
  • A team that’s excited about collaborative design
  • The feeling that this is “the” job that I’m meant to do

I rarely distinguish my “learning” time versus my “working” time… it’s an intertwined process. Learning while I work ensures that the context and situation is appropriate and sensible.

The big question has a several other embedded questions that are really quite interesting….

  • As Knowledge Workers, work and learning are the same, so how does a to-learn list really differ from a to-do list? How are they different than undirected learning through work, blogging, conferences, etc.?
  • Are to-learn lists really important to have? Are they as important as what Jim Collins tells us?
  • Should they be captured? Is so how?
  • How does a to-learn list impact something like a Learning Management System in a Workplace or Educational setting?
  • What skills, practices, behaviors do modern knowledge workers need around to-learn lists?

I’m going to deal with these in a separate post… My own to-experience list and how I manage it is quite different than how I see to-learn lists in formal & informal learning.

Categories: learning Tags: , , , ,