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The E-coach Blog
By Alison Bickford on May 5, 2011
Did you get a chance to see the AITD Conference presentation last month 10 Things That Make E-Learning Work. No?
Well, this 2 part video series captures the virtual classroom case study highlights presented by Colleen Kavanagh and myself, Alison Bickford.
We hope you enjoy. Please feel free to leave a comment or question, and we will respond to it. Thank you.
More videos are available on the Academy YouTube Channel.
By Alison Bickford on April 17, 2011
This week I attended the 2011 AITD Conference in Melbourne. It seemed well attended, and there were some very interesting presenters. I will highlight two:
Roland Deiser was the opening keynote. He is author of Designing for the Smart Organisation: How breakthrough corporate learning initiatives drive strategic change and innovation. Roland was generous with the information he provided in his ppts. In particular, I was interested in Roland’s list of learning activities to build organisation and strategic competence. We have known formal learning is but a small part of learning that occurs in organisations, and Roland provided some sophistication around the scope of the learning function that must occur for strategic change to occur. i.e. the practice of learning must become overtly embedded in all levels of organisational practice.
Roland’s concept of evolving learning and development (L&D) practice, although more sophisticated than mine, did remind me of the changing practice in L&D I presented for AITD in 2005:
- From linear to continuous learning
- From learning that is remote to learning that is immediate in proximity and highly contextual
- From learning that is controlled by L&D to learning that is controlled by employees
- From L&D as a disseminate of content, to L&D as a partner in workplace learning
Peter Hall, Head of Learning for Westpac Group, is also worth mentioning. He spoke about not only how learning is changing, but how learners are changing – and how we need to understand all aspects of technology. Technology is setting the pace of change, and we need think about how we can harness technology to enable informal workplace learning opportunities. The challenges L&D now face are very different, and we need to be agile and to be striving for best practice to stay relevant to today’s business demands.
Colleen Kavanagh from Sanofi-Aventis and I presented “Ten things that make e-learning work”. I will have this presentation available on video in the next couple of weeks.
A few people tweeted during the conference, but this opportunity wasn’t promoted by organisers during the conference.
By Alison Bickford on March 28, 2011
Workshop day of Global Learn conference, I was privileged to attend Design & Develop and Innovative Online Learning Environment, instructed by Abtar Kaur and Zoraini Abas, Open University Malaysia. My interest was to hear how their approach to online instruction and design may inform my own research. Some of the take home points I gleaned were:
- Think about the learner as an individual – some will enjoy getting involved in online activity, others will simply prefer to self direct and learn on their own.
- A definition of instructional design should include key concepts of “economy and elegance” and “efficient, effective and humanely” (Molenda, 2003).
- Our role as designers and facilitators of asynchronous spaces is to ignite learner curiosity.
- When designing, consider both instruction (ADDIE) and motivation (ARCS) models.
- Platform interface and graphic design should be passed through the filters of Clarity, Consistency, Intuitiveness, User control, Simplicity and Aesthetically pleasing.
We went though a process of developing learning outcomes and then designing an appropriate online learning activity. We looked at online courses designed in Ning and Blogspot.
A great opportunity to share experiences and approaches to online learning instruction – variations are almost endless, and there is so much still to uncover and get good at. I’m always interested to apply what I’m hearing to a corporate milieu which at this time remains poorly reported.
By Alison Bickford on March 13, 2011
The E-Learning Network of Australasia (ElNet) has been around for over 6 yrs. The 2011 ElNet Congress was held last Friday in Sydney. A reasonable turn out of people, and some interesting conversations that were testimony to the experience of the people in the room. Australia is certainly maturing in the learning technology space.
My presentation was a very small component of my EdD dissertation. I overlaid my presentation with what I think are three trends in technology and learning:
1. Enablement – Workplace learning strategy should be about enabling staff to do what they have to do in their role. We should always be asking ourselves:
- “Is our learning strategy enabling staff to do their job more efficiently and/or effectively?”
- “What do we need to provide managers to help them to coach staff in the workplace?”
- “What skills to we need to teach to staff to help them to learn in the workplace?” e.g. search and retrieval skills, networking skills, information management skills.
2. Agile content – Information is changing fast. Additionally, staff need to access current and emerging information quickly. We should ask ourselves “If I build this content in this technology platform:
- how easy will people be able to access it in the workplace?”
- how easy will it be to edit and update by me, my team, the staff themselves?”
- what tools and techniques can I use to ensure the information is easy for staff to digest and retain or refer back to?”
3. Employees as producers – With emerging information comes the realisation that L&D is not the fountain of all knowledge. Staff and their peers are the real source of contextual, relevant and up-to-date information. Staff are using text and media technologies at home to produce artifacts that are important to them. We should ask ourselves:
- “Are there ways we can enable staff to be producers of content, respondents to organisational questions?”
- “How will we reward this sharing behaviour?”
I suspect there hundreds of new platforms being built and refined to help organisations to truly enable staff to easily pose questions, share experience and judgement. Three that I know of are:
a) www.yackstar.com - harnessing the ‘social energy’ of teams
b) www.bloomfire.com - spreading knowledge though questioning and sharing
c) www.alphastudy.com - knowledge portals being used in some Australian hospitals
If you are interested, why not download a demo from one of these sites.