Tag Archive | Blogging

My Big Question Response – Predictions for My 2011 #LCBQ

I recently posted my 2011 predictions, but they are general predictions for e-learning and technology. So, here is my response to the Learning Circuits’ Big Question, which asks to be more focused on our challenges, plans and predictions.

First off, over my years in corporate training, I have explored many areas of learning and development. This ranges from classroom training to many facets of e and m-learning. What I am predicting for my own challenges and plans for 2011 is not delving into new technology or mediums of delivering learning, but rather a blending of many approaches and technologies I have in my current learning toolkit. A current example is a large software training effort I am designing that takes advantage of blending technologies and approaches. Believe it or not, this training program will incorporate the following:

  • A web-based training (WBT) course that incorporates QR Codes and social bookmarking in addition to simulations,  instruction and job aids.
  • Blogging that also incorporates use of social media, social bookmarking and screencasts (thanks Screenr and DIIGO).
  • Classroom training – not a traditional classroom format, but a “learning lab” with more advanced explorations of the topic and objectives driven more by the audience than the facilitator or course design. Hopefully also resulting in instruction/tips & tricks shared by the audience and facilitator.
  • m-Learning and informal learning – I am using QR Codes and tweeting to also get content and additional resources out, but more importantly encouraging the audience to do the same. I will be really excited when I see the audience start setting their own objectives and teaching each other.

Yes, the above may look like a mishmash of technology and approaches, but it does support the learning design and the audience’s learning needs. There is a method to the madness and I am not using the technology without rhyme or reason.

Another exciting plan, and somewhat of a challenge, for 2011 is delivering more learning to my audience that is off the LMS. As you can see, much of the fore-mentioned is outside of the LMS. However, here are some more ways I am delivering learning without the need to log-in to the LMS.

  • With few exceptions, my audience in corporate training has been internal. This has recently changed and will change much more in 2011. I have already begun providing training for our external customers, including developing educational games and software demos… not on the LMS.
  • Tweeting and responding to tweets… not on the LMS.
  • Posting job aids on Intranet pages… not on the LMS.
  • Screencasts – These are great for brief, easy to develop, software sims and I have started adding them to our Intranet pages… not the LMS.
  • Guess what, people still learn even when… not on the LMS.

Although these are my own challenges, plans and predictions for 2011, I believe we will see others embarking on similar challenges. So my overall prediction is much more blending of technology applications and more delivery OFF the LMS.

What are your challenges, plans and predictions? Be sure to share them at the Learning Circuits’ Big Question and tweet them too at #LCBQ.


It's The Big Question #LCBQ

I have been honored to be a involved in the revitalization of the Learning Circuits’ Big Question. For several years now I have been responding to the Big Question and have over and over been inspired by the questions posed, not to mention by the many fantastic responses and comments. It has also been a great opportunity to interact with other e-learning bloggers. I am looking forward to being involved and also very excited to be working with Tony Karrer, Glenn Hansen, Thomas Edgarton, and Holly MacDonald on this venture. I hope in the coming months to see the Big Question grow even more in contributors and perspectives.

I hope that you will be visiting and participating in the discussions. We will also be tweeting posts, responses and all things Big Question using the #LCBQ hash tag. So, keep your eyes out for the next BIG QUESTION!

QR Code - Big Question

Reflecting on My 2010 Blog Posts and Happy New Year

Over at the Learning Circuits’ Big Question it is time once again to reflect on the past year. So, I took a look at my most popular posts during 2010. FYI: I used eLearningLearning to identify my “Best of” posts according to social indicators.

Here are the top 10 posts written in 2010:

  1. My e-Learning Don’ts
  2. A Few Practical Tips on Storyboarding
  3. Development Tools I Would Learn If I Were You – June’s Big Question
  4. Looking for THE SCORM Resource?
  5. e-Learning and Games in Healthcare
  6. Keeping Up – April’s Big Question
  7. What is HTML 5?
  8. Voice Over in e-Learning, Sometimes
  9. e-Learning via the BBC
  10. Flash Tutorials on Screenr

While it is nice to see I still have posts from 2009 that make it in the top 10, I only included those written in 2010. The first thing that jumps out is that quite a few relate to development. Although on reflection I probably wrote a great deal this year on development. Any skew towards development is probably due to starting a new job last February and dealing with learning a new LMS, some new software, and getting reacquainted with some old software. All of which I was able to do and the blog helped by being a tool of self-reflection and a great source of helpful comments and shared resources from my very generous readers.

I was very pleased to see the “My e-Learning Don’ts” post at number one. I wrote it as a bit of a rant against “ineffective” e-learning, but it was tweeted quite a bit and was referenced in several other blogs. That was very flattering and on reflection I think I hit on many of the things that also irk others and sinks many e-learning projects. Hopefully it provided a dose of prevention… I know for me I will revisit it, and the comments generated, as reminders of what not to do.

Thank you everyone who visited my blog in 2010 and here’s to a great 2011. Happy New Year everyone!


Keeping Up – April's Big Question

April’s Big Question from Learning Circuits is “How to Keep up?” This is in reference the immense and rapidly expanding technology tools.

It is tough to stay on top of all the emerging tools. However, being involved in an e-learning community is a big help. For me it is a blog community and following many experts on Twitter. Not only am I often made aware of new tools, but also get opinions, tips, and examples of their use. You can never keep up with it all, but access to many experts who are also finding and sharing the lastest tech tools make it much less daunting.

Many of the blogs I follow are part of the eLearningLearning community. So, I browsed “Tools” by keyword on  eLearningLearning. Here are the results and the level of exposure to technology tools this community provides:

Twitter (2482) Social Network (1999) Wiki (1610)
LMS (1346) Podcaster (1239) Facebook (1176)
Flash (980) PowerPoint (922) YouTube (843)
RSS (814) LinkedIn (798) Second Life (687)
iPhone (602) Director (584) Moodle (550)
PDF (521) Captivate (515) Wikipedia (502)
HTML (367) Mac (359) Camera (352)
iPod (342) Slideshare (292) SCORM (291)
Delicious (261) Camtasia (255) Calendar (254)
Blackboard (231) Ning (229) LCMS (223)
MySpace (216) Firefox (214) SharePoint (203)
Skype (199) iTunes (193) Adobe Captivate (192)
VLE (183) Technorati (148) Juice (138)
Microphone (138) Photoshop (134) Google Wave (128)
Google Docs (124) WebEx (123) Elluminate (100)
Jing (100) Dreamweaver (82) Audacity (82)
VOIP (80) Lectora (76) Friendfeed (75)
Adobe Connect (74) Articulate Presenter (74) Flash Player (73)
Blog Tool (62) Pipes (60) CD-ROM (57)
Drupal (54) Adobe Presenter (48) iPad (46)
ActionScript (46) Lotus (46) Diigo (43)
MediaWiki (42) Google Calendar (41) Authorware (41)
Quicktime (40) Flash Video (39) Learn.com (39)
Vodcaster (37) Wink (37) DimDim (37)
Quizmaker (37) Raptivity (37) Evernote (36)
PBwiki (36) Centra (35) OpenOffice (35)
Jive (32) WizIQ (31) SocialText (31)
VoiceThread (28) eXe (28) Google Scholar (28)
OnDemand (28) Ustream (27) Webct (27)
Zoho (25) Joomla (25) Udutu (25)
MySQL (24) Articulate Engage (24) Blogging Software (24)
Blog Software (24) Wetpaint (24) Podium (23)
Toolbook (23) Google Buzz (20) Cornerstone OnDemand(20)
Clipart (20) Wimba (20) Unison (19)
SlideRocket (17) ScreenToaster (16) Xing (16)
iTunesU (15) Connectbeam (15) Propaganda (14)
One Note (14) Jive Software (14) Yugma (13)
OneNote (13) Seesmic (12) Firefly (12)
Lithium (12) TalkShoe (11) Flashform (11)
Qarbon (11) Lotus Connections (11) Cooliris (10)
RapideL (10) SkillPort (10) DHTML (9)
Knowledgeware (9) Assima (9) Apple Keynote (9)
IntraLearn (9) LearnCenter (9) KnowledgeHub (8)
CollectiveX (8) Odeo (7) Swish (7)
KickApps (7) Xerte (6) Wondershare (6)
Prospero (6) MindTouch (6) Moveable Type (6)
Scuttle (6) LearnHub (5) Articulate Online (5)
NetDimension (5) Knowledge Planet (5) Dokeos (5)
Learningware (5) PowerCONVERTER (5) Microsoft Producer (5)
ReadyGo (5) Vuepoint (5) Respondus (5)
ViewCentral (5) CourseMill (5) iCohere (5)
PodPress (4) Odiogo (4) Miro (4)
Xerceo (4) ooVoo (4) Elicitus (4)
Xstream (4) GeoMetrix (4) TopClass (4)
Twiki (4) YAKiToMe (3) Wimpy (3)
Gcast (3) Proform (3) Docebo (3)
CourseLab (3) SimWriter (3) STT Trainer (3)
Impatica (3) GeoMaestro (3) HiveLive (3)
Dogear (3) BEA Pathways (3) Sclipo (2)
LearnFlex (2) ziePOD (2) Widget Podcast (2)
RSS Radio (2) Hipcast (2) Feed2Podcast (2)
BlogAmp (2) RapidShare (2) Atutor (2)
iVocalize (2) KnowledgePresenter (2) ViewletBuilder (2)
SoftSim (2) RapidBuilder (2) SCATE (2)
Learnframe (2) TotalLMS (2) WBT Manager (2)
ResultsOnDemand (2) Bea Pages (2) Apache Roller (2)
WildVoice (1) WebPod Studio (1) Tool Factory Podcasting(1)
Talkr (1) slapcast (1) ReadtheWords.com (1)
ProfCast (1) PodshowCreator (1) podOmatic (1)
PodNova (1) Podlinez (1) Podifier (1)
Podesk (1) Podcast Ready (1) Podcast Blaster (1)
Podbean (1) Podango (1) Podadmin (1)
OdeoStudio (1) Nimiq (1) myPodder (1)
Mixcraft (1) Mirpod player (1) Ksan Player (1)
iRadeo (1) iPodder (1) HuffDuffer (1)
Fonpods (1) ePodcast Producer (1) ePodcast Creator (1)
Easypodcast (1) ClickCaster (1) CastRoller (1)
Castblaster (1) BoxPopuli (1) blubrry (1)
BlogTalkRadio (1) BadApple (1) Audio Bay (1)
Audio Acrobat (1) 1pixelout (1) Gabcast (1)
NetExam (1) Phasient (1) SimBuilder (1)
SAPTutor (1) ViewletACE (1) HyperSnap (1)
TurboDemo (1) SimCorder (1) InfoPak (1)
KnowledgeSolutions (1) InstallShield (1) Datango (1)
iMediaCONVERT (1) PresenterOne (1) Oracle iLearning (1)
Microsoft eLearning (1) Google Info (1) WSSsearch (1)
del.irio.us (1)

That is a lot of tools this blogging community has discussed and introduced to its readers. I also like to make occasional visits to Google Labs and Adobe Labs to “keep up” with the tech tools they are working on and to test drive any beta versions available. When I do find interesting tools I will keep track of them using my Delicious account. Tagged either under Development Toolsor Cloud. When it comes to free cloud apps, I also share them on my blog’s Free Cloud Apps page.

It is tough to stay on top of all the great stuff being offered out there, but the blogs and social media certainly help.

Reflecting on 2009's Posts – Big Question

December Big Question

December’s Big Question at the Learning Circuits blog is “What did you learn about learning in 2009,” but they also suggest looking at your  top 2009 posts for “aha moments.” So, here are my top ten 2009 posts according my blog’s best of list found through eLearningLearning. I have simply added my thoughts next to each.

  1. Flash Accessibility (508 Compliance) I was surprised to see 508 Compliance top the list. It is good to see it is an important topic to many readers, as it should be. What I learned is that with effort Flash courses can be accessible.
  2. Storyboard Templates and Resources Storyboard posts showed up twice (#2 and #4). It is not only a practical tool that many people value, but the post opened up opportunities for me to see how others use storyboards.
  3. Adobe FlashTutorials In my opinion, Flash is the best tool an e-learning designer can possess, but it does have a steep learning curve. And there is no end to that learning curve. As long as I am using Flash, there will be something new to learn.
  4. It Came From Hollywood – Storyboarding See #2.
  5. Where Organizations Go Wrong With e-Learning This was chance for me to gripe about the crazy, frustrating things I have seen.
  6. Using Gagne’s 9 Events of Learning in e-Learning My favorite post among the list! Gagne works for me and I love sharing ways the events can be applied.
  7. Perceived Advantages and Disadvantages We should all be cognisant of how non-elearning designers see online learning.
  8. Interested in Creating an Alternative Reality Games (ARG) for learning? Can’t go wrong with games and learning. They go together all too well.
  9. Quick Explanation of Google Wave – Video I, like others, was just trying to figure it out. FYI: I did get an invite shortly afterwards.
  10. Overview of Kirkpatrick’s 4 Levels of Evaluation Everyone wants to evaluate their courses as soon as they have the time.

I cannot speak about what I learned without mentioning that in 2009 my employer (Provident Bank) was acquired another bank. In 2009, I learned that I was extremely lucky to have been part of, and to have learned from, such a cohesive, talented and very effective team of trainers. Although it did not make the top 10, this was the most meaningful post for me – Farewell to a Great Corporate University.

Big Question – Presenting the Value of Social Media for Learning

Learning Circuit's Big QuestionLearning Circuit’s Big Question this month is “How do I communicate the value of social media as a learning tool to my organization?” In response, I have put together a list of strategies I feel are important and if done right can be effective.

Management buy-in

  • Demo its use to decision makers.
  • Show them case studies (from your industry, if possible, and emphasize return on investment (ROI)).
  • Emphasize ROI again. Can it increase sales, reduce losses, limit errors, etc.?
  • Teach them how to use it and continually encourage them to use it.

Staff buy-in and prototyping

  • Get a willing group of staff to use and evaluate the prototype.
  • Make sure content/communications are relevant to its users.
  • Stay very involved in its implementation, facilitating discussion.
  • Get its users to help you market the course…creating a “buzz” about the initiative.
  • Document any success stories that come from the prototype and share with the entire organization.

Get IT buy-in early

  • We all now IT can sink your initiative quickly, so get yourself buy-in from a decision maker in the IT department.
  • Do as much leg work as you can before you bring it to IT. Not only will they appreciate any prerequisite work you have already done, but you will be that much closer to implementing the initiative.
  • Find numerous people in IT who are already using social media and ask them to use the prototype. They mayhelp you push the initiative through the possible IT bureaucracy and can provide additional evaluation and advice from a tech perspective.
  • Read more about Working With IT.

Communicating the value of social media and informal learning is far from an easy task and overcoming the challenges of getting management and staff on board differs with every organization…some are more open to it than others. Either way, communicating its value does not have any end point. Like any learning initiative, it needs constant encouragement.

Wanna Read Some e-Learning Horror Stories?

Edgar Allan Poe

Over at the PLS Online Course Development blog they have been posting e-learning horror stories and they have had some doozies so far. These stories are not only entertaining, but also valuable ways to learn directly from the witnesses of such ghoulish e-learning events.

Christy from the PLS Online Course Development blog was nice enough to include my horror story, but worked her magic and transformed it into a poem in the style of Poe’s “The Raven.” Thanks!

You can read the poem here. And read their other horror stories here.

Here is the original of my horror story. Although it may be more funny than scary, it was a horror to me went it happened.

Seven years ago, when e-learning was still new to my company, I launched an online course. My company, which provided health care to military personnel from North Carolina to Maine, had service centers throughout its footprint. Of course geographical distance was no obstacle to me, for I was a Distance Educator. Well, actually they called me an e-Learning Designer, but just the same.

As always, I marketed the online course. I included the title of the online course, who should take the online course, what they will learn
from the online course, the benefits of taking the online course, and how to access and launch the online course.

Several days later, while sitting in my cubicle in Baltimore, someone came a tapping. As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my cubicle door. Why is a co-worker from the far reaches of our Virginia service center here at my door?

She said, “I am here for my ONLINE COURSE.”