While you or your organisation might subscribe to one or several online image libraries such as Getty Images, iStock Photo or even Adobe’s own photo library, in this post I’d like to highlight three low-cost (or even free) photo resources that let you search for and access photos instantly.
- Unsplash (https://unsplash.com)
Unsplash is a well-known photo library that lets you use images for free (and without attribution) for personal, as well as commercial projects. The site lets photographers submit their photos who hope to get further (paid) business due to exposure on the site.
- Pexels (https://www.pexels.com)
Another free photo library that lets you use photos freely without attribution. There is also a sister site called Pexels Videos which gives you access to free video resources.
- Death to Stockphoto (https://deathtothestockphoto.com)
This site also offers photos, which can be downloaded by paying for a subscription. There is a separate subscription for companies/brands and for freelancers.
If there are any other good photo libraries you’d like to share here, post them in the comments!
The post Where to get high-quality, low-cost photos for your eLearning projects appeared first on eLearning.
As we witness the transition of traditional eLearning to mobile learning and macrolearning– to microlearning-based training, Instructional Design strategies are also evolving to keep pace.
In this blog, I outline some of the Instructional Design strategies we use at EI Design that are in sync with the current trends and help us create high-impact learning experiences.
I have been an Instructional Designer for nearly two decades. While I keep pace with the current trends and watch out for the new and emerging ones, I am very conscious of using older models by adapting them to the current scenario.
For instance, most of the Instructional Designers would be familiar with Gagné’s Nine Events of Instruction that was presented first in 1965. It has been the core of my learning design approach, and in this blog, I use it to present Instructional Design strategies that are relevant for 2018.
Note: While I have used Gagné’s Nine Events of Instruction as the core, I have modified some of its aspects for online training.
- Gain attention of the learners: A book is judged by a cover, and the introduction to the online course needs to be as arresting for the learner to be motivated to take the course. To gain the learner’s attention, you can use Instructional Design strategies like:
- A teaser video to create an awareness of the online course—this can be shared before the course is launched.
- An interesting animated video to set the context and outline WIIFM (What Is In It For Me).
- Begin the course with thought-provoking questions to help learners channelize their attention on what follows.
- Inform learners about the learning objectives of the course: After you have created an arresting introduction, the focus shifts to what are the learning objectives of the course. You can use the following Instructional Design strategies to outline the learning objectives:
- Highlight: What will they walk away with post this course?
- Add: What gains will accrue, and how will this help them perform better or acquire a new skill?
- Stimulate recall of previous knowledge or learning: As you introduce new concepts that have a bearing on what the learners already know, stimulate the knowledge or learning that they already have. To achieve this, you can use Instructional Design strategies like:
- Provide a personalized learning path based on their proficiency or preference. This can be set based on a pre-test or a survey.
- Use Information Highlights to draw their attention to what they know (for instance, use “Did You Know” and connect them back to the current schema).
- Use immersive and engaging strategies to present content: You are spoilt for choice here, and you can pick from Instructional Design strategies including:
- Microlearning (including learning journeys): For both formal training as well as Performance Support intervention.
- Active learning featuring guided exploration.
- Scenario-based learning: Including Videos and Interactive Videos and complex, branching simulations.
- Storytorials or story-based learning.
Also, offer flexibility to learners to learn on the go and on the device of their choice.
- Today, you can opt for adaptive designs (mobile friendly) as well as fully responsive designs (mobile first). Both approaches feature multi-device support enabling learners to move across devices (from laptops/desktops to tablets/smartphones).
- You can leverage on mobile learning to offer “learning as a continuum” and push both formal training and informal training nuggets.
- Provide guidance: To aid the learners during their learning journey, you can use Instructional Design strategies like:
- Scaffolds/hints and cues as they progress through the learning path.
- Scenarios to help them relate to real-life situations.
- Examples and non-examples.
- Analogies and metaphors to comprehend complex concepts.
- Provide room for practice: We cannot ignore the rigor of practice to help us internalize and apply. You can use Instructional Design strategies like:
- Craft an assessment strategy that pushes the cognition from recall or understanding to application.
- Provide adequate room for practice (without consequences).
- Provide feedback: Feedback is necessary for learners to know where they stand and, more specifically, how can they improve their performance. To aid this, you can use instructional design strategies like:
- Formative and corrective feedback.
- Analytical feedback.
- Redirect for remediation, if required.
- Provide just-in-time learning aids to reinforce.
- Assess performance repeatedly: Repeated assessments keep the learner aligned to their learning goals. You can use Instructional Design strategies like:
- Interim check-points.
- Summative test: Include a comparison of gain vs the pre-test.
- Enhance retention and its application on the job: You can use following instructional design strategies to meet this crucial aspect:
- Performance Support intervention: To aid recall and application on the job.
- Nudges to mastery: Share challenges (quizzes) that help the learners keep their information current, and they can be progressively fed tougher challenges
I hope this blog provides you with Instructional Design strategies that you can use to engage the learner and help them achieve the desired performance gain. If you have any further queries in this regard, do contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Want more insights on how you can enhance the impact of your online training through creative Instructional Design strategies?
Schedule a call with our Solutions Architecting Team.
The post Instructional Design Strategies to Design eLearning in 2018 appeared first on eLearning.
EI Design’s recording of the Webinar on Creative Instructional Design – 7 Learning Strategies You Can Use – Featuring Live Demos.
Visit http://www.eidesign.net/ and write to us for a personalized interaction session with our Solution Architecting Team.
Please check EI Design. for more eLearning, Gamification, legacy course migration(flash to HTML5), Microlearning, Social Learning, and mobile Learning resources.
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The Impact And Benefits Of Personalized eLearning
Personalized eLearning is customization of eLearning so that it can meet the specific needs of learners.
While the concept of personalization of learning is not new and has been in existence since the 1960s, its adaptation for online training or eLearning is a recent phenomenon. The concept continues to evolve and there is no single definition that is widely accepted. I feel that the United States National Education Technology Plan 2017 defines personalized learning effectively:
“Personalized learning refers to instruction in which the pace of learning and the instructional approach are optimized for the needs of each learner. Learning objectives, instructional approaches, and instructional content (and its sequencing) may all vary based on learner needs.In addition, learning activities are meaningful and relevant to learners, driven by their interests, and often self-initiated.”
What Are The Techniques That Can Be Used To Create Personalized eLearning?
Personalization of eLearning is typically done in the following ways:
- You could begin the eLearning course by personalization through an avatar-based selection. This could then be followed by customized elements, like themes, fonts, backgrounds, and so on.
- Another way to offer customized eLearning is through customization of the format of content deliveryto suit varied learning styles. For instance, options to use audio/video, or otherwise, bring in changes in the degree of interactions, and so on.
- The highest degree of customization is at the learning path level that is personalized for each learner through pre-assessments or surveys. For instance,
- A pre-assessment can help us understand the baseline proficiency, and the learner can be given a personalized learning track that corresponds to the competency gaps.
- Alternatively, we can use a survey to assess where the learners’ interests lie and then offer a personalized set of recommendations on how to “consume” this module (that is, which parts could be skipped and which should be taken with special attention).
What Are The Approaches That Can Effectively Personalize eLearning?
As I have highlighted, personalized eLearning can be crafted through a variety of measures that can help us customize the learning experience for each learner.
The 2 approaches that are useful in creating an effective personalization are:
Adaptive learning: This approach uses techniques like pre-assessment to offer customized feedback and a specific path to each learner. The advantage of this approach is its ability to match the varied learning proficiencies of learners to the most relevant learning path.
Today, microlearning techniques can be used to provide tremendous granularity to break down the primary eLearning course and offer highly customized or personalized learning paths.
Control to the learner: In this approach, rather than taking control through a pre-assessment, we empower the learner to create their own customized learning path (based on their interests and their own assessment of their proficiency). This approach is increasingly gaining popularity on account of its learner-centricity.
We can integrate checks and balances through assessments to redirect the learners, so that while they get the flexibility, they do not skip the sections they may not be good at.
What Are The Benefits Of Personalized eLearning For The Learners And The Organization?
Instead of a “one size fits all” approach, personalized eLearning uses various approaches to engage the learner more meaningfully, and helps them set and achieve their specific learning goals.
This is not all; personalized eLearning also enables learners to set their own learning paths and gain exactly what they need.
Learners’ perspective: As I have highlighted, personalized eLearning empowers the learners and offers them control through the following measures that allow them to:
- Set their own goals.
- Set manageable milestones.
- Select their own learning path.
- Select the device they wish to learn on.
- Learn at their own pace.
- Select the kind of interaction levels they feel is relevant for them.
- Get personalized feedback and use it to assess their progress.
- Use the offered recommendations to enrich the learning path.
Organizational perspective: Personalized eLearning provides the following key benefits:
- You can use the personalized eLearning approach to promote a culture of learning as a continuum.
- You will see better learner commitment and higher completion rates.
What Are The Approaches To Offer Personalized Learning?
At EI Design, over the last two years, we have been adding approaches that focus on crafting learning designs to offer control to learners. Essentially, we want to create learning experiences wherein learners can “pull” what they want rather than be “pushed” into a prescriptive learning journey. The personalization of eLearning is a significant part of this practice.
We have created various approaches to offer personalized eLearning, which map to 4 levels, ranging from simple personalization techniques, including Avatar selection, custom themes, and so on, to highly customized learning paths that offer learners the control to choose the learning interactions that match their interest and learning styles.
Let me share a case study that uses several of these personalization techniques in a training course intended for newly joined Instructional Designers in our team.
- With personalization, we are now able to scale the usage of our existing training courses to ongoing learning (learning as a continuum).
- For the learners, personalization provides them the required control to decide on the most effective approach to learn and come back for enrichment.
Here’s a short video that showcases a case study on using personalization techniques in a corporate training course to double the impact of learning.
Additionally, I am sharing the highlights of our approach to personalize eLearning.
Before – The Traditional eLearning Approach
Designed to induct and onboard newly joined Instructional Designers into our team at EI Design, we had created a suite of 15 courses. Although, our audience comprised team members with different profiles, the approach mandated that all Instructional Designers needed to go through all the courses. Goes without saying, the approach used the classical “push” model to train rather than enabling the learners to “pull” what they need.
After – The Personalized eLearning Approach
Using the personalized eLearning approach, we give the control to the learners (new Instructional Designers onboarding with us) who can now craft their own learning path, based on their proficiency.
Highlights Of The Personalized eLearning Approach
- Create learner-centered goals and objectives.
- Assess online learners to identify knowledge gaps.
- Offer timely, personalized eLearning feedback.
- Provide constant online support.
Features Of The Personalized eLearning Approach At A Glance
- Avatar selection/Role selection.
- Pre-assessment on topics covered.
- Range of educational pathways.
- Personalized recommendations/feedback.
- Re-directs learners for remediation and for good performance.
- Provides resources for further exploration of knowledge.
- Learners are informed and empowered.
- Assessments are related to meaningful tasks.
- Reduces the achievement gap.
- Enhanced interaction between individual learners and individual teachers.
- Facilitates the “community of learning” approach.
- Instead of incorporating a linear navigation map, it offers online learners a clickable guide that features diverse eLearning activities and multimedia.
Learners’ perspective: They are fully empowered to design their own personal learning path that works best for them.
Organizational perspective: We can validate their current proficiency and provide support (remediation) as well as personalized feedback. Additional learning resources equip the learners to match the proficiency level that our organization requires. The approach also fosters a strong collaboration (between the peers and with senior managers).
Gains of the personalized eLearning approach for the learners:
- Let online learners choose their own eLearning activities and multimedia.
- Set manageable milestones.
- Incorporate online resource libraries for asynchronous eLearning.
© Ugur Akinci
“Design for How People Learn” by Julie Dirksen is a heavy book, both literally (top-quality glossy paper) and figuratively. It’s an important reference work that I think all trainers, instructors, and e-learning designers should read.
We are lucky to have today e-learning tools like Adobe Captivate and others. Setting up slides, quizzes, links, buttons, voiceovers, inserting images, videos etc. is a breeze.
However, when it comes to designing a learning experience that would actually help the students learn, and make a difference in their lives by changing the way they ACT, I believe there is no one-click app for that.
That complex skill, which requires us to put ourselves in the shoes of our prospective audience, needs to be deconstructed first, its individual components pulled apart and laid bare, and then reconstructed for a training package that really works and changes lives.
Dirksen’s easy-to-read and well-illustrated book accomplishes that goal in 300 full-color gorgeous pages.
The author starts from the A-B-Cs of the subject like “How do we remember?” and “How do you get their attention?” and ratchets up the discussion to higher orbits by diving into different design styles and goals: designing for knowledge, for skills, for motivation, and designing for habits.
One of my favorite chapters in this lovely guide is the last chapter devoted to “Designing Evaluation” since it asks the same questions that I ask myself all the time: does it work? Are the students learning anything? Do they remember anything? Do the learners actually start DOING the right things once the training is over?
Another favorite section is “How learners are different from you?” since for me the greatest trap is to assume that my readers are more or less like me, which they rarely are. Just to realize the ways in which our readers are different from us and understand what we should do to close that perception and cognitive gap is a major design accomplishment, I believe.
The book is rich in laying out the general principles and the research that supports them. But it’s also jam-packed with examples and illustrations to drive home the message.
Chapters are divided into sections, each with its easy-on-the-eye subheader, making it a pleasure both to peruse through the volume and to stop and dive deeper by concentrating on various characters playing different roles during the design process.
For example, in the subsection “Remember, Change Is Hard,” Dirksen presents the photos of four characters, each with a “plausible” excuse not to change and keep doing everything the same old way. Such presentations make the material immediately accessible since it becomes so easy to identify with the characters. We end up saying “yeah, I do that too…” after which we have a renewed and stronger commitment to the material in front of us.
Here are some suggestive headlines from sections that might change the way you design your training materials in the future:
- “How can you know what your learners are thinking?” (p.51)
- “What’s pace layering?” (p.74)
- “Storytelling & Conditioned Memory” (pp. 110, 111)
- “Tell them less, not more” (p.185)
- “Create friction” (p.166)
- “Have learners consider what they already know” (p.162)
- “How do you give directions?” (p.177)
- “The anatomy of a habit” (p. 231)
- “Social and informal learning” (p. 243)
- “What are we trying to measure?” (p. 272)
- “Are the learners actually doing the right things?” (p. 283)
Get your copy today. Highly recommended.