Collaborative technologies provide various tools such as video or web conferencing, instant messaging, wikis, blogs, internet protocol telephony and so on which have changed the way companies do business. It also helped them to become more efficient and consequently more productive. These new technologies have also began to influence the way people learn in organizations as they are now spoilt for choice with a deluge of new and convenient methods of seeking information, sharing ideas and exchanging notes.
Thanks to these collaborative technologies, it is now possible for someone sitting in Milwaukee, US to seek help or exchange ideas with someone who is physically located in, say Baltimore without having to travel out of his office. Similarly, if the person in Milwaukee would like to consult another colleague across the globe in Tokyo, Japan regarding a project , all he has to do, perhaps, is have video conferencing set up, or have a meeting set up virtually through internet telephony or through web conferencing. The colleagues then can collaborate and co-create the project without having to leave their individual offices. The manner in which information is accessed and managed today has led to a new learning paradigm.
Effort initiated by learners:
Learning is initiated by the learners and is largely influenced by their own likes and dislikes, individual preferences and priorities. They seek information based on their need and the value it provides to their work. It means that learning is an on-going process and not just a one-time effort that becomes active with a requirement. If I have a problem, I go online to seek a solution – this has become a natural and instinctive reflex action for the learner.
Platform for social computing:
Learning takes place through a network of like-minded individuals driven by a common objective or background. If you have purchased a software program and need help in using the same, you can join an online forum set up for the users of the software. You can get guidance and tips on using the software and troubleshoot when you run into a problem. Yet another example is an online community of translators who work collectively towards building a directory of terminologies in the languages of their choices.
Learning as a collaborative effort:
Collaborative technologies have enabled learning to become a collaborative effort. Social network sites such as Wikis, blogs, podcasts and videos have enabled individuals to share their achievements or efforts online which in turn are beneficial to others who are looking at such information. Just the other day, I wanted to find out how to create a drop down menu in forms using Microsoft word and I got the necessary information with all the required screen shots posted on YouTube. It took me all of 10 mins to get the information which would have been unthinkable in the pre-Google days. Earlier, a learner was merely a receiver of information – taking what was given to him. But now he is an active seeker of information with the ability to co-create, evaluate, modify or add value to the information.
Collaborative learning has changed the way we learn. It has shifted the focus from information providers to the information seekers – learners. It gives learners, control over the information they seek, how they seek and also provides them with options of sharing the same with their peers.
Subscribe to Our eLearning Design Blogs
Get CommLab's latest eLearning articles straight to your inbox. Enter your email address below:
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.
Ask Compliance managers what they expect from a good online compliance course, and all of them will say, “It should make our employees adhere to rules and policies.”
Most of the companies provide compliance training through e-learning, and often, these courses have high dropout rates. Poor instructional strategies are one of the main reasons for this problem.