Do you know your E-learning Buckets?
APRIL 3, 2013
By Jonathan Shoaf. I've discovered recently I don't like the term e-learning. This is because I recently had to go through the process of understanding what salary you pay someone who is an e-learning developer. It turns out that it varies dramatically depending on who you ask. This is because everyone has a different idea of what e-learning is and what it takes to develop it. So if you tell me you are an e-learning expert, it means nothing to me. The term e-learning covers a wide swath of teaching and learning using digital media. Self-Paced Learning. Online Classroom. Simulations. Multimedia.
ADDIE isn't Dead; it's just more Agile
MARCH 27, 2011
By Jay Lambert. Readers of this blog know that I've been a big defender of ADDIE ( Adapting 20th Century Training Models for the Future , ADDIE isn't Dead, how can it be? , etc.). As a reminder, ADDIE stands for Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluate. Of course, we are using DADDIE now, having added Define to the beginning of each project. No ADDIE isn't dead. But it is evolving.
Using a Skills Hierarchy to Organize eLearning Content
JULY 20, 2011
By Dean Hawkinson. Imagine that you have been assigned the task of creating a series of eLearning courses to teach a particular job. In addition, this job is quite complicated with numerous skills and tasks that need to be taught. Imagine that this job is so extensive that you just don’t know where to begin. Once you have compiled this list, where do you go from there? Hints.
Building the Next Generation of SCORM
APRIL 11, 2012
by Jonathan Shoaf. Last Thursday was the kick off of project Tin Can. While project Tin Can has been championed by Rustici software for years now, it is speeding up activity to produce a 1.0 version of the Tin Can API (planned for June of this year). This project is a first step towards the next generation of SCORM. As one of the most widely used versions of SCORM , the SCORM 1.2 specification is over 10 years old. There have been a lot of changes in internet technology over those years, as well as, many changes in how professional learning is administered and tracked. Actor, Verb, Object.
[Study] The Anatomy of a Training Course
Simple Anatomy of SCORM-based E-Learning
FEBRUARY 7, 2013
By Jonathan Shoaf. remember the first time I heard the term SCORM. I was a software developer working on a quizzing product that needed to export data to a variety of e-learning systems. It was suggested we should support SCORM. So I researched but quickly got lost in the minutia of details and acronyms -- AICC, CMI, SCO, XML, ECMAScript, manifest, packaging, and API. Wait a minute. SCORM Package.
Custom Lectora Video Controls
JULY 17, 2011
By Joseph Suarez. Video can be an engaging enhancement to an eLearning course built with Lectora. However, there may be times when video needs to be controlled without the default video playback controls. These controls can also visually clash with an eLearning course’s template or theme. Fortunately, Lectora offers another way to control video playback. Webdings. On: Mouse Click. Action: Play.
Snap! by Lectora Review
JULY 6, 2011
By Joseph Suarez. Recently Trivantis, makers of the eLearning development program Lectora, announced the release of Snap! by Lectora. While the product isn't revolutionary and at times leaves more to be desired, with a $99 price tag, Snap deserves a closer look. So just what is Snap? Since Snap is a PowerPoint add-on, it exists inside PowerPoint as an additional option on the "Ribbon" menu. Flash.
5 Ways to Tell Stories in eLearning
JUNE 15, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. We’ve talked about the value of storytelling for conveying tacit knowledge in eLearning and a formula for telling stories. So once we’ve assembled an instructional story, how can we include it within an eLearning lesson? Here are a few ideas to explore. Comic Strip. Who doesn’t enjoy a quick comic strip? They’re a relatively quick read, an effective method for displaying dialog, and visually engaging. If the rest of an eLearning lesson follows a standard, templated look, using fun images can contribute to the story’s attention-grabbing effect. Interactive Timeline. Video.
Engage Learners Emotionally in eLearning Experiences
APRIL 14, 2013
By Shelley A. Gable. What was the last book. you couldn’t put down? The last movie. you couldn’t stop talking about? The last song you found yourself playing repeatedly? While you may feel drawn to each of these for different reasons, chances are, you have emotional connections to them all. Perhaps you found one of them profoundly relatable. Maybe one was uplifting. Maybe another surged your adrenaline. Regardless of the nature of that connection, you likely felt engaged and the experience with it was memorable. How can we create these emotionally engaging experiences in eLearning? production.
Adobe Captivate 7 - Now or Later?
JUNE 5, 2013
By Jonathan Shoaf. I''ve always been a software junkie. I''m happy to spend some money on a software product when I know it will save me hours of effort over the course of the next year. So when new software comes out, I''m like a kid at Christmas opening up the gift to see if I got what I wanted. These days, Adobe is the software vendor I''m using the most. I use the Adobe Master Suite and Adobe Captivate for many of my projects. So when Adobe Captivate 7 was released, I was eager to unwrap the gift. The new release is the same Adobe Captivate you already know. blah, I know!)
Emphasizing Noteworthy Content in eLearning
SEPTEMBER 29, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. I was part of a team last year that worked on a large eLearning course, which consisted of several hours of eLearning lessons that learners completed over a four-week period. Interestingly, we received feedback that learners were taking excessive notes. Apparently, the lessons did not provide the cues necessary to help learners distinguish what they ought to jot down versus content they could easily look up later when needed. Naturally, this prompted us to rethink how to help learners take notes productively. So how can we provide this guidance to learners? Expectations.
What does the 80's movie WarGames tell us about learning games?
FEBRUARY 19, 2012
by Jonathan Shoaf. recently watched the 1980's movie WarGames with my son. As a dad, I often use movies like that as an opportunity to teach something new to my son. So we talked about the military, the Cold War, and then my son started naming countries and wanted to know if they were an enemy or ally of the United States. Of course, I explained that things were not that simple. The movie is about a young computer hacker, played by Mathew Broderick , who unwittingly accesses a NORAD supercomputer controlling United States military nuclear weapons during the Cold War.
Building eLearning Scenarios in Working Sessions with SMEs
NOVEMBER 9, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. We know that scenarios benefit performance by immersing learners into workplace situations within training. The storytelling quality of scenarios helps make the lessons learned in training memorable. And there are many ways to incorporate stories and scenarios into eLearning. But how do you write these scenarios in the first place? After all, crafting a realistic scenario requires leveraging tacit knowledge that only a subject matter expert (SME) might possess. Knowledge that is often not documented, even in the most comprehensive knowledge management systems. And so on.
Being a Good Coach through eLearning Feedback
AUGUST 3, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. have a friend who plans to volunteer as an assistant coach for his son’s soccer team in the fall. He told me about some of the advice he found on the web about coaching, and I realized that much of what he learned can be applied to coaching in eLearning as well. Most eLearning lessons contain knowledge checks of some sort, such as scenarios followed by a multiple choice question, hotspot questions that prompt learners to recognize something in an image , and simulations in which learners work through a procedure. Please try again.”. That’s a missed opportunity.
Editing Images with PowerPoint
DECEMBER 21, 2011
By Joseph Suarez. Sometimes an eLearning course needs to be enhanced with an image , but finding the right one can be a chore in itself. It’s frustrating to locate an image only to find it just isn’t quite right. In these cases, it’s possible to tweak the image with a graphics editor. However, newer versions add more abilities and previously hard-to-find options are more prominent. Resize. Rotate.
Memorable Ways to End an eLearning Course
JULY 27, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. The recency effect tells us that people are more likely to remember information from the end of a sequence. In other words, when taking an eLearning course, learners are most likely to remember how the course ended, although the stuff in the middle might blur together. Cognitive theorists believe that as new information enters the working memory, earlier information is pushed out. Since the information entering at the end doesn't get pushed out as quickly, the brain has more time to process and remember that later information. Visual representation. Illustrative story.
Seven Simple Secrets to Off-the-Shelf Course Success
Using White Space for Clutter-Free eLearning
JULY 18, 2012
By Joseph Suarez. Imagine two scenarios. First, you are driving in a car down an open road with the windows down. Second, you are standing in a crowded bus stuck in traffic. Now imagine how the available space around you in each scenario would make you feel. Chances are the car seems less stressful and more inviting (no offense to public transit). What is White Space? Striking a Balance.
Creating a Smart Next Button in Lectora
AUGUST 10, 2011
by Jonathan Shoaf. Reducing the number of objects in your development project saves time to develop and makes project maintenance easier. Most e-learn development tools provide some sort of object reuse through inheritance or master pages. While not everyone is a fan of the next button, it is a common object found in e-learning. Its appearance on many pages makes it a prime candidate for reuse. In this post we take a look at how to make a next button that can be reused on all pages of a project.even if you want the learner to return to the main menu after each chapter. Done, right? Done, right?
Draft a Branching Scenario in 6 Steps
FEBRUARY 27, 2013
By Shelley A. Gable. How often have you encountered eLearning packed with information, yet lacks an outlet to apply that new knowledge in a meaningful way? Designing eLearning around problems that learners encounter on the job can help avoid this pitfall. Scenario-based training prompts learners to solve problems they will encounter on the job, helping to ensure we prepare them to perform their jobs successfully. Branching scenarios can simulate many workplace problems especially well. In a branching scenario , an eLearning slide might only provide the start of a situation.
Do Learning Styles Matter?
FEBRUARY 8, 2012
By Shelley A. Gable. At first, learning styles seemed to be a hot topic because theorists were interested in defining various style typologies and prescribing instructional implications. Hence, we have a lot of literature describing modalities, brain hemisphere preferences, Kolb’s styles, Gregorc’s styles, and more. Lately, a lot of folks are writing about the fallacy of learning styles. The idea is that no one can find an empirical study that supports the need to cater to learning styles. So, is it worth learning about learning styles? Where do you stand on the learning styles debate?
Cues that You Need an Image Instead of Text
JULY 13, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. We know that meaningful images provide a memorable and efficient way to learn information. Yet, in the tradition of building bulleted lists in PowerPoint, text dominates many eLearning courses. As a text-oriented person myself -- someone who finishes reading an article's text and then goes back to view the tables and charts -- translating text into images does not come naturally for me. So, over the past year, I've made it an informal personal goal to get better at it. Here are a few cues that prompt me to consider replacing text with images. Image Cue: Process Overview.
What Makes eLearning Boring?
APRIL 20, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. Most posts on this blog focus on what to do and how to do it – providing navigational cues , designing with social media , stimulating recall , forming sticky ideas , and so on. In this post, we’ll look at what we do too much of, resulting in boring eLearning. Too much text. It’s popular to hate PowerPoint because of the way a slide full of bullets strangles the life out of a presentation. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Have you watched a TED talk? Those presenters use text sparsely and convey messages with images more often than not. Think visual design.
What Can eLearning Learn from “7 Ways Video Games Reward the Brain?”
FEBRUARY 28, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. I’m a big fan of TED talks. A few weeks ago, a colleague pointed me to a recent talk, “ 7 Ways Video Games Reward the Brain ,” presented by Tom Chatfield. It sounded like a great source of inspiration for eLearning design.so I immediately clicked the link and viewed the 17-minute video. Chatfield spends the first few minutes establishing the motivational power of video games by citing feats of time and money invested by people for the sake of games. Then, as the title suggests, he goes on to describe seven reasons games are so engaging. keeps the journey interesting.
ADDIE isn't dead; how can it be?
MARCH 20, 2011
By Jay Lambert. There has been a lot of discussion, and an infamous article or two, in our field about the death of the ADDIE model. This came up again in the comments on my recent blog post, Adapting 20th Century Training Models for the Future. As a reminder, ADDIE stands for Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluate. The naysayers have been saying that this process is too slow and archaic for our modern "this is due by 5pm today" times. And if the attacks are based on the long timelines typically associated with ADDIE, then they make some valid points. It's sad, but true. Design.
Tips for Importing from PowerPoint to Captivate
MAY 2, 2012
by Jonathan Shoaf. Microsoft PowerPoint is a very powerful tool for creating presentations. At most organizations it also has a large user base. This means that a lot of content is developed in PowerPoint. There are times when you may want to reuse content created in PowerPoint in e-learning. Captivate can bring in backgrounds, text, images, and even animations and timings. Getting started is easy.
What does an mLearning participant look like?
MAY 18, 2011
by Dean Hawkinson. Recently, there has been a lot of buzz around Mobile Learning, or mLearning for short, and how it is changing the face of learning in organizations. You can read more about this exciting trend in Jay Lambert’s post, More on Mobile Learning Trends. Being a telecommunications guy, I like to keep up on the latest mobile devices available to consumers. It is really fun to watch all the latest smartphones, tablets and other devices try to out-do each other with new technologies to provide convenience to consumers and businesses alike. Feel free to share your experiences!
Social Media vs. Social Learning
JANUARY 30, 2011
By Dean Hawkinson. Most of us have Facebook accounts and collaborate with friends, family and colleagues through this media. We also use tools such as Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media. In a lot of cases, we are using internal corporate social media tools to collaborate. However, how many of us have considered using these types of tools for collaboration in a training environment ? As a learning professional, I have been pondering this question a lot. Out of all of this, one thing speaks perfectly clear: You have to understand your end goal before selecting the tool to be used.
How to Let Learners Make Mistakes in eLearning
MAY 15, 2013
By Shelley A. Gable. A few years ago, I was a co-researcher on a study that investigated the factors that influence informal workplace learning. The literature on the subject frequently references learning from mistakes as a typical form of informal learning. So how can we leverage this natural way of learning in eLearning lessons? Nudge learners to assess their responses. recently saw this in an eLearning lesson a colleague created. The lesson prompted learners to answer a scenario-based. question. After submitting the answer, an initial round of feedback. Show the consequences of decisions.
How to Create a Customer Training Strategy
Manager Engagement in eLearning Transfer to the Job
MAY 11, 2011
By Shelley A. Gable. Most instructional design models (and several posts on this blog) state the need for on-the-job reinforcement of newly learned skills from training. Examples of reinforcement include (but are certainly not limited to): Partnering with managers to set goals and coach Holding people accountable for stated expectations for using new skills Celebrating and recognizing successes Sharing success stories Incorporating key skills into monitoring processes and performance measures. Let’s use this post to take a closer look at making the first one – partnering with managers – work.