During this year’s DevLearn 2011 conference I won the DemoFest award for the Software Systems Training category. Being selected for this award really put me on Cloud 9. It is so flattering to have my course selected by the DevLearn attendees. Thank you everyone who attended DemoFest. And a big congratulations to all the other winners of this year’s DemoFest. It is a true honor to be in their company.
Over the coming weeks I am going to blog about the processes of designing, developing and implementing my DemoFest course. My intention is to share how I go about putting a course together and to provide the support materials used to design the course. For example, the course design plan, storyboards, communication plans, etc.
A good place start is to first provide an overview of the course and lessons learned as described in my DemoFest submission below.
Why was this project needed? Describe why you built it.
Johns Hopkins HealthCare began transitioning staff to Microsoft Office 2010 applications in February 2010. Staff required training on using the new application interfaces and learning how to complete Office tasks that have changed in the new and updated Office software.
What authoring tools, systems, or technologies did you use to create this project?
Adobe Flash, Adobe Captivate, Articulate Presenter, Articulate Quizmaker, Microsoft Office 2010. Social Media included Twitter, Screenr videos, and Diigo social bookmarks.
How many “learners” will benefit from this program or project?
760 Johns Hopkins HealthCare staff, but the course is being extended out to additional entities within the Johns Hopkins Health System.
How long did it take you to complete this project?
Approximately 120 hours during a two month period. This time does not include ongoing learner support using social media and Intranet pages.
What problems or challenges did you have to overcome while creating this project?
Time constraints, which resulted in not including audio in the course. Limited staff participation in the social media elements, specifically Twitter. The need to use multiple development tools in order to accomplish the project’s design.
What valuable insights, lessons learned, or results did you discover when working with these challenges?
Due to the less-than-expected use of Twitter among staff, there was less participation in the social media elements. In the future, I would put more effort in marketing the benefits and use of Twitter among staff. Also, I would find a way to incentivize its adoption by staff. I learned that the ongoing support implemented on our Intranet pages, Screenr videos, Diigo social bookmarks, and job aids were highly valued by staff and seen as very practical and accessible resources that are continually being used. Also, the non-linear design and easy to navigate course encourages it to be also used as a refresher course. One of my most valuable insights was that the use of whimsical characters was an effective way to market the course, and increased recognition and participation in the project. Using the characters to market the course included placing full-size cut-outs of the course’s main character, Captain Upgrade, throughout our buildings, and appearing on LCD screen advertisements, flyers, and on our Intranet.
Below is the link to the Office 2010 course. I have also provided direct links to the learning program’s social learning elements.
And direct links to some of the social learning elements in the learning program:
In the next post I will describe the design process and share a copy of the course design plan and example storyboards.
Thank you again to all who attended DemoFest and a really big thank you to the eLearningGuild for holding an incredible DevLearn conference.
I am very excited to be heading out to the DevLearn Conference and Expo this week. This is my first visit to the conference, but I have known of its reputation as a fantastic conference and enviously followed last year’s back channel on Twitter. This year I get to attend first-hand and will also be tweeting all the new and exciting things I expect to learn from the conference. If you do not already know, the conference hash tag is #DevLearn. If you plan to use the back channel, here are some great tips courtesy of the back channel curator, David Kelly (@LnDDave).
Plus, there will be a live #LrnChat tweetup and I am extemely excited to meet many of these great tweeps in person. Although I will be manning my DemoFest table during the tweetup, I hope to sneak a few #LrnChat tweets in here or there. If you are there please stop by my DemoFest table and introduce yourself. Looking forward to learning, learning and learning some more and also to meeting new e-learning peeps and many of the people I have gotten to know through this blog and my Twitter network.
Hope to see you there,
For quite a while I have been teaching a computer basics class in addition to developing online courses. The class is a traditional classroom course focusing mostly on basic PC and Outlook skills. Participants vary greatly in skill level and I encounter a fair number of people not familiar with what many would consider common computer tasks. Realizing many of these tasks potentially save computer users a lot of time and aggravation, I decided to also share these online via very brief video tutorials within the organization’s Intranet. The tutorials have been well received and I have decided to also make similar tutorials available to the general public.
I am happy to announce Right Click Rick’s blog. The blog is already off to a running start with Windows 7 and Office 2010 tutorials, all of which are very accessible and very free. By also having a strong social media presence, I hope to provide as much ease of access as possible for anyone wanting to learn a few new computer tips and tricks.
I appreciate you taking the time to visit www.rightclickrick.com or any of his SoMe pages which are linked below.
I just read an article in T&D Magazine titled “Beef Up Your Training Toolbox with Web Tool.” The author, Mary E. Green, offered suggestions for how you can use web tools to increase engagement in the traditional classroom. The article inspired me to look at what is on my Cloud Apps page that may also be helpful to the classroom trainer. Here is what I pulled from the page that I think would be great to use in the traditional classroom. Plus, they are all free.
Charts, Diagrams, and Data – Explain it in a chart using the apps below. Plus, you will be surprised how much supporting information you may find in the Google Public Data Explorer.
Cacoo (create diagrams)
ChartGo (create charts)
Google Public Data Explorer (Create charts and visualizations form public data)
QR Code Generators – Put QR codes in your manuals and on the classroom screen. They can contain text or URLs and is a great way to get additional information and resources to attendees with smart phones.
Screencasts – Software trainers, show them how it is done in a screencast that can be shared in the classroom and also accessed later at their convenience. Heck, give them the screencast’s link via a QR code while you are at it. Participants can create their own and use them to share their new skills with others.
Social Bookmarking – Make sure they have all your online resources by giving them one link to all your bookmarks. Plus, when you add additional resources at a later time, they will see them too.
Social Media – Get a back channel going in the classroom and keep it posted on the screen. Plus, what a great way to continue supporting learners by interacting via social media after the class ends.
Storify (create stories using social media)
These are just the apps I pulled from the Cloud App page. Do you have suggestions of where classroom trainers can find useful online tools for the classroom? If so, feel free to add them to the comment section.
Over at the Learning Circuits Blog the Big Question is “How do we break down organizational walls when it comes to learning?” So, here are some practical tips and advice on how to break down the organizational walls.
- First off, always be on the lookout for opportunities to bring external learning inside the organization. Whether online courses that can be linked to from the LMS or bringing a live training event into the classroom, potential opportunities should always be on your radar.
- Social media – Right now I am in the midst of encouraging staff to use social media as a learning and teaching tool. This is challenging especially when some staff are reluctant in embracing any new technology. Social media provides access to an immense amount of informal learning and direct access to experts outside the organization walls. My advice, be patient, keep encouraging its adoption, tout the positive results and give it time to catch on.
- Give staff easily accessible avenues to getting over the wall like links to social bookmarks that contain well organized, tagged, learning opportunities. I also like to plaster QR codes wherever I can that also take staff to these bookmarks or to specific sites relating to subjects relevant to staff.
- A big barrier for too many organizations is simply getting access outside the firewall especially access to social media. Start selling the powers to be on the benefits of more open access to social media.
- An issue I have seen at numerous organizations is time limitation for non-exempt staff. In other words, organizations encourage exempt (salaried) staff to take courses during whatever time is convenient to them, but do the exact opposite for non-exempt staff. The reason being organizations do not want to pay staff for possible overtime. Either set aside time for their development within the allotted 40 hours of work time or be willing to pay for their time beyond the 40 hour work week. Remember, your staff deserves, and is well worth, your organization’s investment.
- Coach staff on their job development. Coworkers should be open to giving advice and coaching fellow coworkers looking for opportunities for development including assisting with finding learning opportunities available outside the organizational wall.
- How many times has a coworker went to a conference and not shared what they learned or the resources they found? Make sure there are avenues and expectations for this information to be shared. Even if it is as simple as sending an email with links to resources and learning opportunities found.
- Less we not forget, tuition reimbursement programs greatly encourage staffs’ academic growth. If your organization does not have one, start asking for it. If they do have one, take advantage of it and encourage others to do the same.
Any other suggestions on how to assure learning is not restricted by the organization wall? Add them in the comments section or write a post and let us know at the Learning Circuits Blog.
This month’s Big Question at Learning Circuits is regarding assessing the impact of informal learning. Or more specifically:
How do you assess whether your informal learning, social learning, continuous learning, performance support initiatives have the desired impact or achieve the desired results?
The extent of my experience in evaluation has focused on applying Kirkpatrick’s model to classroom training and e-learning. Although there may be some elements of the model that lend itself to evaluating informal learning, I do not see the model as a whole working well for assessing the impact of informal learning.
I wish I could present a straight forward model that works well for assessing the impact of informal learning, but I do not have one to offer. What I do have are some off the cuff ideas on how to assess impact. Much of this will be anecdotal information collected, but none the less information that has value in assessing impact.
- Survey staff regarding what they have learned and how they applied it. It makes sense to use a social media tool to do this (e.g., use hash tags in Twitter). Please don’t think smile sheet, instead think individual questions delivered via social media.
- Participate, participate, participate and see first hand what they are learning. They will probably also be talking about how they apply what they learned… That’s some good anecdotal evidence of applying behavior.
- If you have identified specific things staff have learned and applied, look for how it has impacted the organization (results). Oops, easing into Kirkpatrick’s model, but if you can, you can.
- Measure the “buzz.” Are people talking about it and/or encouraging others to use social media and informal learning? What are they saying that is convincing others? Is it because it has made a difference in their abilities or lead to successes?
- Find the leaders. Who are leading discussions, being quoted, retweeted, yammed about, followed, liked, etc.? Recruit them to help you measure the impact. They have pull and can help you garner much of the fore-mentioned information.
Keep in mind, the above are ideas I “blue skied,” but if you have additional ideas, I would love to hear them in the comments section. Don’t forget to check the ever increasing posts and comments on the LCBQ blog and add your 2 cents there too.
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.
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