We know Alvin Toffler as a sociologist, writer and a futurist, not as a learning expert. It is said that this quote is from his book, “Rethinking the Future.” As I haven’t read it, I really don’t know the context of this quotation. But I think his definition of the illiterate makes us ponder. It also reminds us of a quotation by Charles Darwin, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines unlearn as “1: to put out of one’s knowledge or memory, 2: to undo the effect of: discard the habit of”.
There is so much we unlearn without much effort. Knowledge not often revised, skills not regularly practiced and beliefs shattered by contradictory experience are all day-to-day examples of unlearning.
But what about a situation where person’s knowledge, skills and beliefs serve him well and is therefore reinforced? How can he unlearn them in the face of a superior learning, which will serve him better?
In a company where I worked, head office staff used to call long distance to collect current sales figures from branch offices spread across the country. Email was introduced to increase efficiency and reduce cost. Although adequate training was conducted on email, the phone bills never came down substantially. The reason – people continued to use the phone to find out if the emails were sent or received!
Another more personal example of unlearning, a habit, is quitting smoking. I too quit smoking some years ago. I remember trying everything under the sky – sticking patches, chewing gum, counseling…nothing helped. One day, suddenly, without any apparent reason my urge to light up just wasn’t there. I unlearned but I don’t know how
We learn as much as we unlearn. I am sure you will agree that one’s existing knowledge is one great hindrance to future learning. That brings me to my questions
Is there a formal process for unlearning? Can we just plainly unlearn knowledge, skills and attitudes? Or can we unlearn only when we discover a substitute behavior or skill?
How useful it would be for both organizations and individuals if they master unlearning! Imagine organizations casting away ineffective and inefficient processes and methods effortlessly so that they do not hinder learning better ones.
Can organizations conduct “unlearning programs”? If so, how can we facilitate unlearning? Can we think of having an unlearning module before we start a learning module so that we can clear the old hindering structures before we build a brand new one?
Thank you for reading my blog and look forward to your comments and opinions.
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E-learning is increasingly used by organizations as online courses are effective, affordable and can be accessed anytime, anywhere. But, many organizations are not able to realize these benefits offered by the online training medium due to a serious problem – high dropout rates.
Day-by-day, the demand for rapid e-learning is increasing, and so, everyone is using rapid authoring tools to develop online courses. There are many authoring tools available in the market but a few became very popular. Most of our customers and prospects prefer Articulate Storyline to other rapid authoring tools such as Captivate and Lectora. Developing courses in Storyline is very easy, and the tool offers a lot of flexibility to customize the features or look and feel of the online course.
When it comes to mobile learning, HTML5 with responsive design is required to provide the best learning experience on mobiles, especially on smart-phones with small screens. Courses developed in Storyline and Lectora work fine on mobile devices such as iPads and other tablets, but it is difficult to view them in smart-phones. Captivate has a responsive design feature. So, we must choose it if we need to develop courses for all mobile devices. Captivate is not very intuitive and flexible to develop customized features. We can also build mobile- compatible courses using manual coding but it is time-consuming and expensive.
Recently, I read the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design” and in it, I saw the great news for which I was waiting for a while. I thought I should share it with you all. The developers of Articulate Storyline, Lectora Inspire, Lectora Online and other authoring tools are in the process of adding responsive design feature by the end of 2015.
Here is some information from the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design”.
|Scales to multiple screen sizes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Responsive design features||Coming by end of 2015||Yes||Coming by end of 2015|
2016 will be a watershed year for mobile learning as all courses may be made compatible to all mobile devices. Storyline may become the first choice to develop e-learning or m-learning courses because of its intuitiveness. This may force all learning management systems to be compatible with mobile devices. MOODLE is ahead in this regard, and it has a responsive design feature and works on all the mobile devices.
Hope you find this post useful. Do share your views.
Despite today’s technology and a connected world, classroom training is still an effective method to impart training to all employees. But, instructor-led teaching may not be appropriate for all training needs. Suppose there is a requirement for an organisation to train its employees spread across the globe, on a particular product, in a month’s time, classroom training will not serve the purpose. Here, e-learning serves as a good option to train employees, at comparatively lower costs, within a given schedule. Due to improvements in reliability and speed, converting classroom training materials into online courses has become a justified and cost-effective opportunity.
In my previous blogs, I have discussed about the importance of instructional design strategy and visual design strategy, the two main elements of e-learning in terms of design approach. In this blog, I will discuss about the significance of audio and audio strategy.
Every organization has to follow a set of laws which govern their sector in the country they operate. So, it needs to ensure that the employees are effectively trained on these rules to avoid compliance issues. Traditionally, this was done through face-to-face training in an engaging manner. But, with organizations expanding globally and the need for constant training, companies started using e-learning to quickly reach their global employees.
E-Learning is gradually replacing the classroom training format, worldwide. 41.7 % of fortune 500 companies are using e-learning tools for online training (E-learning Magazine 2013).
Online courses need to be engaging and interactive because they are self-paced i.e. an instructor is not present to deliver the courses.
Content comprehension is an important step in the e-learning development process. It broadly includes identification of relevant content and its separation from irrelevant content and arranging it in a proper manner. It enables instructional designers (IDs) to ensure that topics ‘flow’ in a logical sequence. It also helps IDs to find gaps in the content. If performed effectively, it will help you understand the subject-matter of the course better, and you will be able to present the content in an easily understandable manner.
IPad – a device that has revolutionized the corporate world. According to the Mac Observer, 94% of Fortune 500 companies are either testing or using this device from Apple. The widespread usage of iPads has resulted in the opening of new vistas in online training. No longer were learners required to carry “heavy” laptops or remain confined to their desks. People could conveniently go through online courses on these devices. Indeed, these devices have truly made learning anytime, anywhere.
When it comes to training, most organizations have a need for product training. Be it manufacturing, pharmaceutical, electronics or finance, product training needs to be imparted by companies in all industries. So, how does one cater to a single form of training for such different segments? In this post, we will look at a few effective e-learning design strategies that are best suited for product training across various industries.
Curriculum-based courses are very much in demand today. Organizations prefer curriculum-based courses to stand-alone courses. Curriculum courses cater to a long running training program that usually runs for a period of two to three months. It is a course that has several modules which instruct on a particular subject in-depth. From the learner’s perspective, these modules would be easy to grasp and understand. They can be bite-sized modules that are easily accessible by the learners, anywhere, anytime, as per their convenience. Since all the modules of a curriculum are inter-related to each other, it is a tough task to develop such modules effectively.