December 23, 2013 | Leave a comment
With approximately 6 million tablets sold this year and more than 25 million smartphone users in France, it is safe to say that our user habits have changed as these small screen entertainment devices are fast becoming the focal point of internet usage. While mobile telecommunication techniques continue to grow, we are now able to consider a new type of approach to online training: Mobile learning (m-mobile). Today, mobile e-learning applications are enhancing the multimodal blended learning approach. How will learners benefit from using this type of training tool? And what about trainers?
Mobile Apps: obvious advantages
An application is very often more user-friendly than a mobile website. Users find them easier to use as browsing and content are purposely designed for mobile use. Simplicity is essential: applications can be downloaded from online stores (Apple store, Windows store and Google Play) while the most popular ones can be used in “offline” mode, which allows the user to access its content whenever or wherever they please, without requiring an internet connection. Therefore, this gives the learner the freedom to choose when they would like to take their course, as time is no longer an impeding factor. It is also vital to select an available application that is compatible with all types of “devices” (and thus all types of OS), ensuring compatibility with the learners’ mobile network.
Lastly, the most up-to-date mobile apps comply with distance training standards (SCORM) and enable us to carry out the same tracking of results as a traditional e-learning course.
An adapted approach to education
This educational approach has to be undertaken a little differently. Information must be concise, summarized and make an impact for it to be effective. Multi-tool based learning will involve shorter e-learning modules not only to deal with the problem of time constraint, but will also make learning more enjoyable through video and animation features.
By using this mobile app, a trainer can also benefit from new ways of teaching. For example, equipped with their tablet, trainers can readily transfer learning modules to their target learners, while working from a factory, store or meeting room.
Will m-Learning replace our traditional training courses?
Mobile learning is a useful training platform that complements the traditional training method. Digital mobile platforms are also well adapted for employees who are often on the go. However, it is unlikely that training would be carried out on this type of platform alone, as it should be used alongside other tools for an improved educational experience.
November 26, 2013 | Leave a comment
MOOCs are everywhere. Newspapers, radio shows, social networks, blogs and even TV news are all talking about them. They say it’s a technological revolution, an innovation, a new educational method. Everyone is raving about them, but how do they improve our way of teaching? They show the bright visible top of the iceberg, but are there parts that they are hiding from us?
By the way, MOOC means “Massive Open Online Course”. The idea is actually very simple: teachers create lessons that take place at a specific time just like a standard learning course, except the lesson occurs online and not in a classroom. Once the first lesson is aired, learners can go back if they wish to review it. Students sign up for a MOOC in the same way they register for a university class and take online training courses every week during the semester. A MOOC can gather a lot more learners for a lesson online than in a lecture hall. While taking these courses, students use videos, forums, MCQs, Internet resources, and social networks. Tools that most of us use every day. All in all, nothing very innovative!
There are many activities included in this training method; however, it doesn’t seem any different from blended learning used by companies or training centers. Here, it is adapted to higher learning, which is getting up to speed in offering online distance training. In 1950, Australians were already offering distance training courses with “School of the Air”, lessons by radio for kids living more than 1,000km away from school. As for companies, it has been offering online training for employees for over 20 years. A company can create and post its own MOOCs online. E-learning software publishers have been providing this type of service to companies for a long time via LCMS software for creating content and LMS platforms for publishing training courses.
Is MOOC a new type of media in order to hide that fact that our universities are behind in online training?
Universities have been controlling and managing their own digital workplaces for over many years; however, these intranets focus on training methods and not learning content. Universities and prestige colleges have some catching up to do when it comes to e-learning. Creating a training platform will guarantee quality lessons and learning methods by monitoring and formalizing training information. This is a great advantage; however, don’t forget that you must pay for every diploma or certification given by a MOOC.
The concept of a MOOC is very large and focuses on spreading the most knowledge to the public as possible by imposing the final objective: the diploma! So what are the goals set by MOOCs? Spreading knowledge or imposing approving the largest number of diplomas?
Time is up for thinking about MOOCs, SPOCs (Small Private Online Classes) are already here!
October 17, 2013 | Leave a comment
What is more unpleasant and tedious for an online training designer than spending time going after multimedia content that already exists? Where is it? How to find it in order to use it again in an e-learning module? Certain tools for creating and managing training (called LCMS) are adapted to meet this request and help training services save precious time. Decrypting what we call the “reuse”.
What exactly is the “reuse” of activities and media?
This term is a part of uninterrupted training vocabulary that signifies the recovering and reuse of distance training module elements: educational activities (quizzes, fill in the blank, multiple choice, etc.) and media (illustrations, videos, sounds, etc.).
Therefore, pedagogical designers can quickly and easily create new modules using already existing material.
This is one more step to prevent educational resources from escaping and optimize “educational capital” (please download the whitepaper for more information)
Find multimedia contents in an LCMS
A few LCMS have integrated this useful feature, which quickly became essential for users. How do you implement it? Elements (activities and media) are tagged with typical key words during their creation in the LCMS. This metadata provides a useful detailed description, especially for the search engine included in the LCMS that enables users to make requests by using keywords. Therefore, it identifies the multimedia contents that correspond to what the person is precisely looking for.
What are the major benefits for training services?
The reuse features are very attractive to distant training designers by allowing them to quickly carry out production tasks. Time is no longer lost in recreating already existing elements. Finally, reuse is a type of “recycling” mode that is extremely beneficial for HR services since the time saved has a direct impact on productivity.
October 17, 2013 | Leave a comment
The use of Web 2.0 in companies generated a new type of distant datacenter: cloud computing. Everyone is saying it, but what does it mean exactly?
Definition of cloud computing
The expression “cloud computing” can be explained by a virtual space that enables you to stock, share, and refer to training data (working documents, learning material in different formats, meeting minutes, etc.) from a user’s computer on a secure remote server.
Advantages of the cloud
What are the significant advantages for a company who signs up to use clouding computing services?
- Security: training resources are no longer locally saved on a user’s computer, but on a highly secured externalized server. This prevents many risks: loss of data, computer hacking, etc.
- Availability: training contents saved on a remote server can be accessed, changed, and recovered anywhere using any type of device with an internet browser. This is very practical when telecommuting and collaborating internationally.
- Collaboration: thanks to the cloud, all resources available to training teams are saved in real-time and benefit from versioning (management of multiple releases). Therefore, players handling the same project can work together and help enrich the latest version of working documents.
- Upgradability: cloud updates are guaranteed by the provider. The user does not have to handle anything on his or her computer.
Cloud computing is increasingly being used by businesses of all different sizes for the reasons mentioned above: So when are you going to get the cloud?
September 10, 2013 | Leave a comment
INTED2014, the 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference will be held in Valencia (Spain), on the 10th, 11th and 12th of March, 2014.
INTED2014 is an annual conference dedicated to researchers, teachers, scientists and Education professionals from all over the world. Each year, more than 600 participants coming from 70 countries attend this event.
This event is the ideal oppportunity to share experiences and projects in the field of learning and teaching methodologies.
More information: http://iated.org/inted/
April 26, 2013 | Leave a comment
Training one’s employees represents a cost. It also requires time and workforce mobilisation. Distance training, classroom-based training, or both? This implies making strategic choices according to available logistic and financial means. But what results can be expected? Are the benefits genuinely tangible?
Training, a patent springboard to success
Vocational training is a fantastic asset for the future of companies, even if they are not necessarily aware of it. Indeed, there is a relationship between increasing employee skills and company productivity.
As early as in 2009, it was estimated that “moderate training effort made within a company is associated with a productivity gain of circa 1% relative to a company that does not implement training. This moderate effort corresponds to 11 hours’ training per company employee. “*
Just a few hours of training for a 1% productivity gain! Even though the number of training hours dispensed is not proportional to the productivity gain, there is no need to be a keen economist to grasp the benefits of training.
Companies must back their employees, this precious value-creating force.
ROI measurement facilitated through digital learning
When a company makes an investment, for internal training in the present case, it is only legitimate for it to wish to measure the impact of this action. But how can it do so?
In digital learning (i.e. training using the computer as a performance vector), the LCMS and LMS platforms can provide precious indicators, facilitating the measurement of return on investment for training courses.
These must fit into a global context that includes other estimation factors.
Based on the principle that a company’s human resources are a key source of value creation and that there are ways of assessing training efficiency, the answer to the question “What is the point of training one’s employees?” becomes obvious: to support and ensure the company’s growth!
April 8, 2013 | Leave a comment
ASTD 2013 is the premier event for workplace learning and development professionals, with more than 9,000 attendees from over 80 countries. This event will occur on next May 19-22 in Dallas (United States). This is the largest conference in this field.
April 8, 2013 | Leave a comment
Training is one of the key elements of companies HR departments, nevertheless, it is not easy to find a comprehensive solution to manage all learning system (creation, management and delivery of distance and classroom training). That is why e-doceo Germany invite training specialists on April 2013 to discover a SaaS global solution to develop companies pedagogical asset.
March 1, 2013 | Leave a comment
The arrival of digital technology has overturned the codes of corporate training. Indeed, computers have take up their place in learning techniques, both in distance and classroom-based training, also contributing to the emergence of original education methods. How can we defined digital learning? What has been its impact on training techniques? Will digital learning take over from blended learning?
Digital learning, what is it?
Simply put, digital learning is THE fundamental trend currently shaking up the training world. What does it consist of? Over the past few years, the integration of computers into training trades has become common knowledge, leading to the democratisation of e-learning. Digital learning takes this integration further, now encompassing educational content for classroom-based training. This presence of digital technologies, both in e-learning and in classroom-based courses, is the essence of digital leaning: media digitisation and interactivity throughout all educational materials.
Visible progress conferred by digital learning
Digital learning, democratised in training, is not limited simply to e-learning. It is becoming established throughout the value chain focused on educational efficiency (creation, management and distribution of educational material). Some examples of the benefits of digital learning:
- Greater training interactivity;
- Use of digital media in classroom-based training;
- Implementation of remote collaboration within work teams;
- Training industrialisation;
- Enhanced computer security;
- Data backup to cloud computing solutions;
- Emergence of fast learning (very short duration training using online content), etc.
So what about blended learning in all that?
To head off any rumours: NO, digital learning is not a substitute for blended learning. Blended learning (combining e-learning and classroom-based learning) is a learning method, a “way of training” learners. Digital learning, on the other hand, is a technological upgrade that impact learning.
Care must be taken not to confuse the learning method, which is an educational use, and digitisation, corresponding to optimised technological processing.
Current training courses (e-learning, blended learning and classroom-based learning) are undergoing a digitisation phase, offering benefits for both training departments and companies.
January 7, 2013 | Leave a comment
Tracking is a crucial aspect of any trainer’s work. In distance learning, tracking is an integral part of the teaching approach, because it allows for online mentoring. Let’s review the concept of tracking and the educational role it plays in distance learning.
Tracking: what is it, and what purpose does it serve?
As described in our e-learning glossary,”Tracking is done via the LMS platform, to gather teaching information about learners’ progress through their e-learning course: time spent on distance training, number of log-ins, scores earned on online assessments, etc.”. This valuable intelligence, which is directly tied to a learner’s advancement through an e-learning module (or SCO, “Sharable Content Object”), will enable trainers to respond with rigorous, personalised online mentoring (following up with each learner, studying the recorded results, sending reminders, offering support, etc.).
So tracking is crucial - but not using just any distance learning tool!
Indeed, it is impossible to begin tracking with a simply average e-learning tool. In order to track a SCO on an LMS platform, the two must be compatible: this is called interoperability. Standards within the distance learning market, particularly the widely-used SCORM standard, guarantee interoperability between a SCO and an LMS. Following the SCORM standard ensures that the advanced feature of learner tracking will be available for distance learning content and LMS platforms. In short, where tracking is concerned, it’s best to use SCORM-compliant tools! The AICC standard also makes tracking possible, but it is less commonly used: a good e-learning solution will be compatible with both standards.
Tracking applied to the case of mobile learning
Although mobile learning is a developing trend in distance training, driven by growing demand from companies, few publishers of e-learning solutions offer suitable authoring tools compatible with the SCORM standard that can be used to produce m-learning modules. As such, you must carefully research the software solutions you intend to use. The inevitable distance between learner and trainer in m-learning, for example, absolutely must be compensated for with conscientious online follow-up. Failing this, distance learning will become less productive.