With all the talk of creating short, consumable, e-learning, most are long, boring, and difficult to retain. Think about it: When was the last time you took a self-paced e-learning course that was so long, you wanted to give up out of shear frustration? As you took the course, the impending final assessment loomed, and all you could think about was that there was no way you were going to pass the final quiz because you just knew that you could not possibly retain everything in one sitting. The last thing you wanted to do was go back through the module and retake the assessment, which would almost certainly have a new set of questions.
I have always been fascinated with software design, even as a young kid learning BASIC on a Radio Shack TRS-80, I wanted to make that computer do stuff. The problem was that when the sun came up, I wanted to go fishing or skateboarding or play baseball with my friends. Although part of me always enjoyed it, I began to see software design like golf or windsurfing, which is to say, one has to spend a lot of time to get good enough for it to be enjoyable.
It's said that for every action, there's an equal and opposite reaction. A few weeks ago, I explored the connections between instructional design and the critical and commercial success of the video game app Angry Birds, and how many of the same principals that made that game so popular could be co-opted into training programs.
Launching a training program can be a daunting task, one that take months or even years to shepherd from its inception (identifying the need for an intervention) to its closure (evaluation). It takes planning, organizing, and managing resources to successfully complete your goals — or, in other words, it takes project management.
Business today moves fast, and it's become critical for instructional designers to ramp up their own processes just to keep pace.
If you're an experienced educator, you're probably used to designing classroom courses. However, when you step away from the blackboard and into the world of virtual learning, you need a whole new set of tools, training software and practices to guarantee your program is a success.
Learning professionals need a host of skills in order to be successful. One that often gets overlooked is business acumen. If trainers don't truly understand how a business works, what it expects out of its training department, or what it ultimately wants its employees to be able to do, they simply can't be effective.
As educators, we're intimately familiar with the time and effort required to prepare and present any kind of training program, whether it's in a classroom or online, self-directed or a collaboration. Under-preparing for a program is a recipe for disaster, but sometimes even when we put the effort in to new learning initiatives, we still
It's indispensable, it's maddening. It's revolutionary, it's boring. It's every training designer's best friend and worst enemy — PowerPoint.
Love it or hate it, PowerPoint is one of the most commonly used tools for corporate trainers. But, as is the case with any such tool, its value lies in how its used. With that in
The first post I wrote here was called Critical Skills Learning Professionals Need Now, back in October 2010. Since then, I've been on a quest to help people in the learning and development industry continuously learn new skills and stay current. Fueled by a personal quest to avoid professional stagnation and a desire to see our profession thrive, I've tried to write about useful, practical, and value-added ideas that learning professionals can put to use in their work today.