5 ways that learning content is changing

By Amelia Fuell

Colourful image of a head made up of boxes which are moving and evolving into something elseIn our recent whitepaper, ‘The Future of Learning Content‘ we investigated the ways in which learning content was evolving, as well as the implications for L&D departments, and the practical steps they might take to create a winning content strategy. Here are some insights taken from the whitepaper around how content is changing.

Technological innovation is changing the ways that we produce, deliver and consume learning content. The traditional self-paced e-learning course is in decline, and we are moving towards a mobile-centric, multi-format digital-learning paradigm where learner engagement is key. Here are the main 5 ways we found that content is changing: Continue reading


7 ways to make self-directed learning stick

By Amelia Fuell

Cartoon image of learner training her brain, caption: step by step I trained my brain not to wander offLearning has never been more accessible. For virtually any skill – whether it’s learning a language, coding, business management or yoga – learners motivated by their own personal needs and goals will be able to find an online platform or application that has been created to help them. Self-directed learning is becoming more popular too: for example, 58 million people have registered for a massive open online course (MOOC)s since 2011, with nearly half of those signing up in 2016 alone.

But while technology has widened opportunities for skills development, information overload is a growing challenge. There are some 80,000 different education apps on the App Store alone. Furthermore, attrition rates are high: over 90% of people who start a MOOC will never finish it. In the age of distraction, many of us are guilty of downloading an app on our phones with good intentions, but then failing to use it long term.

If you are keen to start learning new skills online, then it can be hard to pick the right course and even harder to stick at it. So how can you create successful habits that will help you learn effectively and achieve your goals? Here are a few essential tips …
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Ways you can use xAPI right now to enhance learning

By Sven Ove Sjølyst

In this pre-recorded video Sven Ove Sjolyst, Product Manager for CourseBuilder gives a walk-through of new improvements and features of CourseBuilder, with the spotlight particularly on xAPI implementation.

xAPI adds a whole new dimension when creating learning content, more than was achievable with SCORM; allowing a much richer experience and more micro level view of how users are interacting with content.

This Vlog explains the exciting changes that are now possible.

 


Vlog: the STARFISH model for gamification of learning

By John Helmer

starfish_vlogPeople talk a lot about gamification of learning but what does it really entail? Gaming structures and techniques can massively improve engagement with learning, and bring dry subjects like compliance vividly to life. But simply adding a leaderboard and a few badges your learners can win to a standard elearning course will not cut the mustard.

So how do you make sure your learning programme is really tapping into the authentic power of game-based learning?

In this, the first of a new series of learning vlogs introduced by our own Carl Crisostomo, Carole Bower takes to Brighton Beach to illustrate a handy mnemonic that can help you ensure your gamified learning programme is the real deal.

Contact us if you’d like to discuss how we can help you provide engaging and innovative gamified programmes for your learners.


The challenge of mobile learning content

By John Helmer

Illustration of happy learners using mobile learningResearch from Towards Maturity shows that two out of three learners find accessing mobile learning essential or very useful, and 57% like to be able to access learning on the go.

Meanwhile in the US, where 50% of the US workforce holds a job that is compatible with at least partial telework and approximately 20-25% of the workforce teleworks at some frequency (according to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com) learning solutions that support mobile learning are increasingly being seen as essential.

67% of organisations in the Towards Maturity sample now offer mobile learning in some form, but many struggle with getting the right content in place for this channel.

The options can seem bewildering. Should you build or buy for a start?

Then, if you’ve decided to buy off the shelf e-learning content, where can you find mobile content that really works on mobile devices?

On the other hand, if you’ve decided to build your own, what are the important design principles you should follow – and which is the best content authoring tool to use?

Because we know these are troublesome issues for many of our regular readers, we recently put together a webinar that brought together the key experts within Lumesse Learning on mobile content. Between them they span the key fields of knowledge about

  • OTS content for mobile
  • Learning design for mobile
  • Technology for mobile authoring

To watch a recording of this lively roundtable session  – click the link below.

Webinar: Mobile learning content. How to get it, how to build it ­– and how to make it fabulous


How adaptive pathways make digital learning more elastic

By Nicholas Murphy

Close-up elastic band to illustrate making digital learning more elasticOne of the key challenges for digital learning design is creating solutions that meet the needs of all learners. Risk often drives decision-making when it comes to content: if we don’t know how much people already know, we create content that tries to teach everybody everything, regardless of their level of expertise. This is particularly true for any training that is driven by a regulatory or compliance motivation.

Challenging this approach has become a key driver for us at Lumesse in moving, with our clients, towards a more personalised, learner-centric dynamic.

Typically, courses teach and then test: it’s the foundation of most e-learning. But that model is founded on an assumption that the audience will have a low baseline of understanding. The reality, however, is that most learner populations will already know quite a bit about a given topic (even if some of that ‘knowledge’ comes from hearsay, myth or legend!).

One sure way of making the learner switch off is to make them sit through a lot of material they know already. So reversing the teach-test structure and running an initial diagnostic has been a principle in learning for some time. Test me first, teach me what I don’t know, and then test me again.

However, both of these approaches are limited. They work for content you need to remember, but much less well for behavioural competency, where we need to feed the subconscious to drive behavioural changes.

Increasingly, we are beginning to use adaptive learning paths to increase the effectiveness of digital learning. Here’s how it works.

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Flash conversion to HTML5 gains urgency for learning content

By John Helmer

graphic illustrating Flash conversion to HTML5 - superhero business man arrests declining arrow The long slow death of Flash could be entering a terminal phase – with big implications for any organisation that has large amounts of learning content developed in Flash.

Concerns have grown about serious security vulnerabilities in Flash (a patch released in March addressed 23 separate security bugs). Meanwhile, major video platforms such as YouTube, Daily Motion and BBC have either migrated to HTML5 already or are in the process of doing so. Now Google has announced that it will phase out full support for Flash in its Chrome browser by the end of 2016, seen by many as sounding the death knell. Other browsers, too, are following suit.

This raises the worry that Flash might be supported by Adobe going forward with less than 100% enthusiasm and energy – making security worries all the more intense when it comes to legacy content.

Of course, publicly, Adobe is committed to not leaving its past users high and dry: ‘the responsible thing for Adobe to do is to continue to support Flash with updates and fixes, as we help the industry transition,’ it told Fortune. However, the company’s statements leave no doubt as to where the future lies: ‘Looking ahead, we encourage content creators to build with new web standards.’ Meaning, principally, HTML5. Renaming its web animation software from Adobe Flash Professional to Adobe Animate CC was seen as yet another step in the company’s distancing itself from the Flash brand.

So where does this leave organisations with hours and hours of learning content developed in Flash – content that might be in daily use around the organisation, but which could increasingly become the source of business-critical security risks?

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Adaptive learning is not a blue-sky technology

By John Helmer

Graphic to illustrate adaptive learning course authoringGiven some of the hype-driven media coverage, you might be forgiven for thinking that adaptive learning is one of those blue-sky, might-come-soon technologies you need a masters in machine learning to understand.

But you’d be wrong. Adaptive learning is a right-here, right-now technology. True, at the very high end, there are some heavyweight AI-driven systems (with correspondingly heavyweight price-tags) in the space. But the ability to create content that adapts to the learner’s needs is becoming increasingly mainstream. In fact, you can do it yourself.

That’s right: you don’t even need to get your development partner to build it for you. With an authoring tool like CourseBuilder 8, in-house development teams can create learner-adaptive content of considerable sophistication right now.

The benefits of adaptive learning are easy to understand. Sven Ove Sjølyst , our very own CourseBuilder guru, lists them in this slideshare, and shows how you can use CourseBuilder’s powerful ‘branching’ capability to personalise learning to the individual learner.

Based on a pre-test, several different types of adaptivity can be built into a course:

  1. Role-specific – learners get only the learning appropriate to their role or level
  2. Scaffolding based on level – learners are presented with a selection of learning from different levels, based on their role
  3. Scaffolding based on results – a bad fail on a quiz within the learning that might indicate significant knowledge gaps, will cause different screens to be presented of lower level knowledge
  4. Free play – the learner decide the order, accessing content in their own time and in the order they prefer to do it
  5. JIT – content can be presented ‘just-in-time’ according to need at that specific moment, and fully searchable

This last type of adaptability is especially appropriate for learning accessed on a mobile device. CourseBuilder 8 supports mobile learning, but also learning across all devices, including desktop and tablet as well, for a true omnichannel experience.

To find out more about how you can create adaptive learning with CourseBuilder – or to book a free demo – drop us a line on learning@lumesse.com.

 



Why pictures always win – and what it means for learning design

By Richenda Sabine

Photograph of a baby's face‘If one wants to reach younger people at an earlier age to shape their minds in a critical way, you really need to know how ideas and emotions are expressed visually’
(Martin Scorsese)

Be honest. What was the first thing you looked at on this page? The headline? That interesting quote from film-maker Martin Scorsese?

Or the baby?

We are visual creatures. It is hard-wired in us. A large percentage of the human brain is dedicated to visual processing: images grab our attention more readily than the written word – even when those images don’t have the emotional content of a baby photograph. It’s very probable that you looked at the infographic below this block of text before you read these words. This doesn’t mean you are a superficial person, or too easily distractible: the truth is, we are all the same. It is the way our brains are made.

Chart illustrating how our brains interpret visual information

Our brains are pre-wired to automatically interpret relationships between objects with minimal effort.

This fact of life is hugely important for how we design learning, and as a learning designer I am conscious of it every day. In a world where more and more of our learning and information is received in digital form, we need to understand this dynamic better in order to engage and motivate our learners through excellent learning design.
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