bozarthzone

Alternatives to Kirkpatrick

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While the Kirkpatrick taxonomy is something of a sacred cow in training circles—and much credit goes to Donald Kirkpatrick for being the first to attempt to apply intentional evaluation to workplace training efforts—it is not the only approach. Apart from being largely atheoretical and ascientific (hence, 'taxonomy', not 'model' or 'theory'), several critics find the Kirkpatrick taxonomy seriously flawed.

The Myth of "Best Practices"

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I get lots of requests for list of "best practices".in in e-learning, in the virtual classroom, in instructional design, in classroom presentation. Here's the deal: there's no such thing. A "best practice" is best only in the precise, specific context in which it exists. I don't recall who first offered this analogy, but think of it this way: what works in my marriage won't necessarily work in -- and may even damage -- yours.

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The Myth of Best Practices: Update

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In 2009 I wrote a post, "The Myth of Best Practices" , that described problems with both context and fidelity. Here''s a great example of what usually happens when "best practices" are transferred from one setting to another

Final Version: E-Learning Buzzword Bingo Card

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Here 'tis, with thanks to all those who contributed (see original post and comments). I had more suggestions than spaces (especially loved Bex's "needs more cowbell") so if I compile enough maybe there'll be a Card 2.

2009 Top Ten Tools for Learning Professionals

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Each year Jane Hart of the UK's Centre for Learning and Perfomance Technologies invites practitioners to submit their "Top 10 Tools for Learning Professionals". Here's mine; be sure to check out the lists others have submitted. iPhone. It completes me. Much more computer than phone, it’s on this list because of the apps (which count as “software”, I should think).

Social Media in Training

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I keep seeing lots of "tips for using social media tools in training" but not many concrete examples. Certainly the bigger goal is to help training become less an event and more a process, and to support ways for workers to form communities and interact with one another -- not just with the trainer.

Find Your 20%

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I see lots of good-presentations-gone bad, often due to the speaker trying to put too much information into the available time. The result: Critical points are lost in the mass of content, or the speaker is rushing at the end to get to what s/he really wanted to say.

bozarthzone - Untitled Article

bozarthzone

I lost a dear mentor on Thursday. Colleen Aalsburg Wiessner, Ph.D., died suddenly while on vacation with her family. She was one of the kindest, gentlest souls I have ever known, and the loss to her family and to the learning community is immeasurable.

Handy Job Aid 1

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Zaidlearn posted this the other day in the context of a longer discussion about Bloom's taxonomy. This item is one of the most useful I've seen, linking objectives to possible activities

United Breaks Guitars? Training Won't Fix That

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I've had a great time with the recent, fun brouhaha over United Breaks Guitars. With 3 million+ views so far, the video is a testament to the new 21st century power of the individual living in the world of social media, and should give hope to all of us who ever wanted to stick it to The Man.

Sacred Training Cows

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I am just home from Training 2009 where, among other things, I offered sessions on "Better than Bullet Points" and "Instructional Design for the Real World".

Pet First Aid iPhone App

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Back in December I wrote about one of my favorite iPhone apps (and excellent example of a performance support tool), the Pocket Aid first aid app. At that time people were already asking for a version for pets, and it's just been released. from JiveMedia LLC.

Tips for Working with SMEs

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We had a lively discussion in my VILT session today, "Instructional Design for the Real World". Here's a screenshot of the conversation (click to enlarge it). My own addition: the best SME may not be the one who's been doing the job the longest, but the one who has reached competence most recently.

"I'm a Computer Whisperer"

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Well, closing the lid DOES work sometimes

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E-Learning Buzzword Bingo Card

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Clark Quinn, Cammy Bean, Steve Sorden and I have been having a Twitter discussion about buzzwords associated with e-learning. The conversation quickly showed that once-useful concepts are often cannibalized and reduced down to little more than hype for the marketing and the misguided.

The First Help Desk Call

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"Compared to the scroll, it takes longer to turn the pages of a book." And what about the manual

OMG! Control freak much?

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I've just finished up the first draft of my latest book, Social Media for Trainers , due out from Pfeiffer in summer 2010. It's pretty much a quick explanation of some Web 2.0 tools (like Twitter & Facebook) with ideas and instructions for conducting specific training activities with each (see the post from November 9). One weekend I brought home a pile of activities-for-trainers books from the office, intending to do a quick sweep to see if I'd missed anything major (I had.

Trainer's Evaluation of Workshop

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Trainers: My "Instructional Design for the Real World" online session yesterday, hosted by Ray Jimenez and ASTD-Los Angeles, included mention of a trainer's evaluation of his/her own training session. It's something like a reverse smile sheet, and as you can see from contributor Randy Woodward's notes, it can serve as a useful tool for both trainer and management. I put it on slideshare as a downloadable file

Wherefore Failure?

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Malcolm Gladwell's new collection of essays, What the Dog Saw , includes a piece on the Challenger explosion. Essentially, he asserts, most failures of this magnitude can't be traced to a single mistake or one bad decisionmaker. Sure, hindsight being what it is, things could be done differently -- but there are several things, sometimes in important chronological order or patterns -- that all need to happen. In other words, the problem is the result of a system failure.

What I learn from #lrnchat

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Every Thursday evening there's a great fun live gathering on Twitter called #lrnchat. It's a fast free-for-all organized around a theme, like instructional design, virtual worlds, social learning, or e-learning myths, structured around 3 general questions. If you're in the training/learning/Ed business, folks you've heard of often drop in, as do many folks you haven't heard of. Once you meet them, you'll want to know them better.

Better than Bullet Points

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Hundreds of people joined me for a whirlwind tour of my second book, Better than Bullet Points: Creating Engaging E-Learning with PowerPoint. The session, hosted by the Training Magazine Network , came down to this: Plenty of horrible e-learning has been created with expensive tools. Good e-learning is about thoughtful design, not software. Articulate's Tom Kuhlman offers this example of an e-learning tutorial created with PowerPoint.

New Skills for Learning Professionals

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This month's Big Question asks what new skills learning professionals need going forward in a Web World, "where learning and performance solutions take on a wider variety of forms and where churn happens at a much more rapid pace". I don't know that I see 'new' skills so much as further refinement of the ones that we've needed since we first tried to integrate any web technologies into traditional classroom and OTJ instruction: 1.

Classroom Trainer Resistance to E-Learning

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Many reports coming in on last week's ASTD International Conference and Expo -- in my world coming from instructional designers and trainers making use of technology and social media -- expressed surprise at the prevalence of attendees who, to quote Cammy Bean , are "Traditional training people for whom most of this eLearning stuff is kind of exotic and/or quite overwhelming and threatening."

Education v. Training

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The @slqotd Twitter project, which offers a daily conversation via a "social learning question of the day", has taken a new twist. Frequent flyers are to post an answer on their own blogs, then send the link to @slqotd. The current question asks for the difference between learning and training, which I am taking the semantic liberty to alter to "the difference between education and training".

Monty Python gets it.

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To extend last week's post on who owns information, how about this: Monty Python put free videos on YouTube, in better quality than the bootlegged ones -- and sold 23 THOUSAND PERCENT more DVDs

Who Owns Information?

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A 'social learning' theme keeps kicking dust in my direction, first when the TR-DEV Yahoo group folded (see post below from January 24), and again the other night. Clark Quinn, Marcia Conner, and others have begun a wonderful Thursday-night Twitter gathering (8pm EST; #lrnchat). Conversation turned to the willingness to share information, and I noted that it is often management that is reticent to share data.

Can Your People Pass the Banana Test?

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I'm researching an upcoming live-online session, "Tips for the Positive Deviant" and just ran into this anecdote: During a positive deviance workshop designed to surface strategies for curtailing the spread of AIDS/HIV in Myanmar, "The group consisted of prostitutes -- nearly all of whom insisted she faithfully made her clients use condoms. The moment of truth occurred when each participant was asked to apply a condom to a banana.

Wherefore Passion?

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Dave Ferguson has revived the Working/Learning Blog Carnival and has asked for thoughts on "work at learning: learning at work". Here's what's on my mind this rainy Sunday. My dissertation research focused broadly on communities of practice (CoPs), and narrowly on a single community comprised of workplace trainers who gathered voluntarily to “stamp out bad training”. The group, now in its 24th year of evolving membership, has served members well as a vehicle for developing skills and camaraderie.

Reality or. Media?

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My January 24 post, "Collapse of a Community of Practice", included an aside about what training practitioners are really doing v. what the media -- print, business blogs, "forums" and "webinars" would have us believe (another aside: there is nothing positive about the word "webinar"). My third book, From Analysis to Evaluation , was envisioned as a compilation of tools developed and used by practitioners in the field, loosely arranged around the ADDIE model of instructional design.

The Collapse of a Community of Practice (CoP)

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I have long been a subscriber to, first, the old TR-DEV listserv and its revised format as a moderated Yahoo group. While the site shows 4,000 members, I would guess that truly active membership -- lots of posting, interaction, some argument -- is in the range of 50-100.

Information Skills Needed

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I've been doing a good deal of research/work lately with knowledge management. One of my concerns is that the focus so often seems to be only on output: where can we store knowledge? What sort of database can we build for it? Do we need more procedures manuals ? Here is a piece out of Millikin University on the information skills needed by those entering knowledge work roles.

bozarthzone - Untitled Article

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I've talked about this before and want to add a new voice to the choir. I get two kinds of calls from people wanting to "do" e-learning. The first come form those who are interested in expanding their scope to include more learners, to reduce travel and other costs, or to otherwise solve a business problem. The other calls come from those who want to know how to track and monitor and measure completions.

Tony Karrer's E-Learning Learning Community

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Thanks to Techpower's Tony Karrer for including the Bozarthzone blog on his list of sources for eLearning Learning It's "a community that tries to collect and organize the best information on the web that will help you learn and stay current on eLearning." Be sure to check it out, and while you're at it be sure to also take a look at Tony's elearning tech blog. And for you Twitterers/Tweeters/Twitterpeeps types, he's well worth following there, too.) And PS: Happy New Year