Free Webinar: Successfully Implement Your Learning Management System (LMS)

I’m doing a free virtual session on November 29 for anyone implementing a new learning management system! Content is based on my book LMS Success. Come join our awesome, always energetic audience.

Register here:

Here is the session description:

Congratulations! You’ve selected the perfect Learning Management System. Now what? Join Katrina Marie Baker in this 60-minute webinar for a lively discussion and some amusing war stories from past implementations.

Our agenda will cover how to:

  • Complete your implementation so smoothly that executive leadership is in awe of your project management skills.
  • Avoid common pitfalls that cause your implementation to stretch out longer than originally expected.
  • Work effectively with your LMS vendor to determine a timeline, set expectations, and get everything done on time.
  • Assemble an administrator team that is excited, knowledgeable, and well organized.

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Free Webinar: Trends In Training And Learning Management

On November 21, I’m doing a virtual session covering the biggest trends in training and learning management! Just in time for the new year. The audience is always super involved, which keeps things entertaining.

Register here:

Here is the session description:

Join Adobe’s Senior Learning Evangelist Katrina Marie Baker for this lively conversation about the latest trends in training & development. Based on recent studies and research, the session will explore what people are doing in organizations around the world, and how organizations can achieve great results with modern learning programs.

Katrina Marie Baker will discuss the:

  • Impetus behind creating and developing virtual universities
  • Growing demand to encourage learner immersion and ongoing engagement
  • Rise of mobile learning
  • Role of skill-based learning in business training
  • Use of gamification for learner engagement and motivation
  • Ongoing expectations of learners for video
  • Proving the value of your learning program through more relevant reporting

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Recommended Research: Constructivism & Learning Technology

Last week, we had an awesome virtual class on how to implement an effective gamification strategy within a corporate learning environment!  Here is the recording and slideshare.

In class, we briefly touched on some learning theories and research related to constructivism and the effective use of technology, games and gamification within the overall learning environment.  I’ve been reading a lot of articles recently that relate to constructivism, and some of our attendees were interested in receiving a list of those resources.  Below are a few reading suggestions.

I’ll create more recommended reading lists, so follow me if this sort of thing is useful to you.  The next blog posts will probably be devoted to virtual and augmented reality resources.  (If you haven’t checked out the crazy cool VR features in Adobe Captivate 2019, please take a look!)  I will also post my own summaries of select articles over the next few weeks.

Please add your own suggested reading articles in the comments section!

Here are three introductory level readings that are great as starters:

A great explanation of what constructivism is, what helps us learn, and what learning truly is.

An in-depth look at the learning process from beginning to end, including how to use educational technology (and how not to use it), and the importance of social learning and collaboration.

An overview of the types of educational technology available for use in the learning environment, as well as a historical perspective of how that technology has evolved.

I just finished working my way through the below articles, many of which are referenced by the above chapters, and cross-referenced amongst each other:

  1. Shaffer, D. W., Squire, K., Halverson, R., & Gee, J. P. (2005). Video games and the future of learning. Phi Delta Kappan, 87, 104–111. Google Scholar
  2. Shuler, C. (2009). Pockets of potential: Using mobile technologies to promote children’s learning. New York, NY: The Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop. Google Scholar
  3. Thomas, M., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace. Google Scholar
  4. Van Eck, R. (2006). Digital game-based learning: It’s not just the digital natives who are restless. EDUCAUSE Review, 41(2), 16–30. Google Scholar
  5. Vavoula, G., Sharples, M., Lonsdale, P., Rudman, P., & Meek, J. (2007). Learning bridges: Mobile technologies in education. Educational Technology, 47(3), 33–37. Google Scholar

More articles and article summaries coming soon.  Please follow my posts if you’d like to see more!

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Why Use Digital Body Language And Learning Analytics?

Collecting and combining data can clearly provide valuable information in designing and developing smart learning. The potential of learning analytics to enable smart learning remains a non-investigated concept. In this article, I discuss digital body language and learning analytics.

Digital Body Language And Learning Analytics

Learning and Development today should be all about the learner—what they want, what they need, and when they need it. Despite the breakthrough technologies, the current scenario of L&D is uncertain, as the need to have a clear link between training and performance increases. And eLearning is not far behind. Deriving actionable information about learners’ learning needs, pain points, and the learning intent are driving the L&D teams now. A newer concept has emerged that may have the answer to it, and that is digital body language.

So, What Is Digital Body Language?

Consider a traditional classroom. The student and the trainer are in the same environment at the same time. This makes the trainer more aware of how engaged the student is. Accordingly, if they notice the learners are disengaged, they can see their pain points and take corrective measures to increase the engagement. This is now possible in the digital environment, too.

Digital body language, or else known as DBL, a concept made famous by Steve Woods in 2009, was used to explain the science of tapping into the signals and activities customers are exhibiting that show what they want, and when they are likely to raise their hands. DBL gives electronic signposts to a person’s interests.

Decoding Digital Body Language

Digital body language represents everything that learners are online

– Lori Niles-Hofmann.

DBL is the sum of all activities taken, the number of courses taken, pages visited etc. Learners might be able to hide behind their computer monitors and mobile phones, but their actions reveal key information about their interests.

Think of it like a learner’s facial expressions. Instructional Designers need this data to accurately assess where the learner is on their learning journey so that they can adapt their strategies and approach accordingly.

Making The Data Accessible

The main use of DBL is that it can be objectively measured using data. By looking at just a few figures, L&D teams can immediately understand where the learner stands, what they are interested in, and what kind of approach or strategy can be followed. Information can be collected via feedback forms, polls, or even the number of visits to the course. These can be used to score the learning strategy.

Source Of Information

The information that can be unraveled from DBL is:

  • What device or browser does your audience prefer?
  • At what time or day of the week do they access content?
  • What content length is optimal?
  • Do they prefer videos, articles, or microlearning?
  • What are the potential obstacles learners are facing?

Compiling this data—and reporting it on a regular basis—is a good way to begin to bridge the content divide. But, how can we report, record, or track data at a micro-level? The answer could lie in xAPI and LRS or even custom coding.

xAPI, Learning Record System (LRS), And Custom Coding

xAPI or Experience API, the successor to SCORM, poses unique features such as offline tracking, tracking learner experience, reducing the need for an LMS etc. This gives rise to the question of how are we going to track our course without LMS? This can be done through LRS. We can track our eLearning courses wrapped in xAPI using LRS. Now, what is LRS? LRS is the heart of any xAPI ecosystem. LRS stores learning records and enables the export of raw learning data.

Now, coming to the main query, what do LRS and xAPI have to do with DBL? Adopting these technologies will help you build the right platform to decode DBL. However, only xAPI and LRS are not enough to get the complete picture. An adaptive learning platform is required, and here is where custom coding acts as a catalyst. xAPI recognizes and records learning experiences, LRS acts as a database, and custom coding gives the ability to draw the appropriate data.

On the other hand, when it comes to learning design, we need to factor into a few things. Let’s look at this next:

Data-Driven Learning Design

Data-Driven Learning Design or DDLD gives us the evidence that we can no longer push the content we believe learners should or must digest.

Here are a few ways that DDLD can help in Instructional Design:

1. Designing The Learning Objectives

DDLD gives us insights into:

  • What type of media should we use?
  • Is the mobile access high or low?
  • When do learners log in?

Answering these questions helps us create better courses. For example, if learners are comfortable with more visuals than text on the screen, then you can consider giving concrete examples such as combining words and visuals. Depending on the learning strategy, learning objectives can be defined.

2. Content Design Decision

The intent of DDLD is to help Instructional Designers make decisions about whether to go for self-paced eLearning or a blended solution. For example, DDLD can help Instructional Designers decide when to put a quiz, what type of introduction the course will need, and when we can place a drag-and-drop or any sort of exercise.

3. Consulting And Evaluation

DDLD gives insights into how the training can have an impact on learner performance. Consulting and evaluation along with DBL help to build courses that align course objectives with business goals.


Digital body language helps you drill down into different levels of data and information. It’s fun to observe and learn at the same time. Utilizing the insights drawn from DBL means taking on an iterative design mindset. Instructional Designers can constantly refine and improve what they do based on what they find out to increase engagement.

To conclude, data will leave you in amazement. It uncovers a veil of learners’ preferences and helps to create courses which are more learner-centric.

So, what’s your plan for understanding the digital body language of your learners?

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Top 5 Mobile Learning Strategies for Corporate Training

In most organizations’ training deliveries, Mobile Learning is now becoming a vital approach in training. With the help of Mobile Learning, which involves multi-device training, learners can now access information anytime, anywhere on the device of their choice. They can also access the training on desktops or laptops.

Mobile Learning offers learner-centricity as it is easily available to learners, and they can determine the pace and how they would like to consume it. This approach also helps them learn at the moment of their need. This kind of learning is suitable for formal, structured training as well as for performance support intervention.

The key benefits of Mobile Learning based training strategies are that they provide high learner engagement, establish better completion rates and higher retention, encourage social or collaborative learning, facilitate learning as a continuum, and acclimatize well to both Formal Training as well as Performance Support.

The following infographic highlights 5 must-adopt Mobile Learning strategies that should be adopted in corporate training to better enhance learning.


With the implementation of Mobile Learning in corporate training, learners can now access information at the time of their need, develop better completion rates, and engage in social learning or collaborative learning in the organization. Mobile Learning strategies in training thus benefits the learners as well as the organization. These strategies can be used in combination with Microlearning, Gamification, Personalization, and also leverage on Video Based Learning to design high-impact corporate training.


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5 Must-Adopt Mobile Learning Strategies For Corporate Training

Today, mobile learning is an integral part of most organizations’ training deliveries. It is moving up from a “good-to-have” approach to a “must-have.” In this article, I share 5 mobile learning strategies that you can adopt for corporate training.

Mobile Learning Strategies For Corporate Training You Should Adopt

Mobile learning for corporate training refers to the anytime, anywhere training that is available on mobile devices. It is a “multi-device” training that is available to the learners on the device of their choice, including smartphones/tablets. They also have the flexibility to access the same training on desktops or laptops.

As a highly learner-centric approach, it can be used to offer both formal and Performance Support Training.

What Are The Key Benefits That Mobile Learning Strategies Offer For Corporate Training?

Mobile learning based training strategies offer several benefits for corporate training as shown here:

  1. Provide flexibility to learners to learn anytime, anywhere and when required.
  2. Offer multi-device support so that learners can learn on the device of their choice.
  3. Offer higher learner engagement.
  4. Demonstrate better completion rates and higher retention.
  5. Adapt well to both formal training as well as Performance Support (just-in-time learning or job aids).
  6. Promote social or collaborative learning.
  7. Facilitate “learning as a continuum”.

Are There Any Specific Triggers That Are Accelerating The Widespread Adoption Of Mobile Learning Based Training Strategies For Corporate Training?

If we look at our typical day, we know how often we check our mobile devices. Smartphones are our preferred tool to access info at the time of need.

It is logical that the mobile devices should also offer training that can be taken on the go and within the users’ workflow. On account of this, mobile learning solutions are now seen as the future of learning.


  • Mobile learning is learner-centric. Since it is available to the learners on the devices of their choice, they can determine the pace and how they would like to consume it.
  • Mobile learning facilitates access to learning exactly at the “moment of need”.
  • Mobile learning can be used as effectively for formal, structured training as well as for performance support intervention (featuring Performance Support Tools or just-in-time learning aids).
  • A significant value mobile learning brings in is its capability to promote social learning or collaborative learning in an organization.

As Mobile Learning Evolves, Are There Any Specific Aspects That Should Be Considered As You Design Corporate Training?

At EI Design, we spotted mobile learning as a game changer for corporate training in 2011. The world was then using Flash-based courses predominantly, and we created a custom HTML5 framework to understand how to design mobile learning solutions and what mobile learning strategies would deliver the required impact. Since then, we have crafted nearly 2000 hours of mobile learning content.

We have seen mobile learning evolve as follows:

Avatar 1
Mobile learning was used to complement traditional eLearning wherein parts of formal training were available on select mobile devices (predominantly tablets).

Avatar 2
Mobile learning was used to supplement formal training (largely offered in the traditional eLearning format) as learning aids/job aids to provide performance support. Many of these are now available on smartphones as organizations have started opting for the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) policy and learners could access these tools on their own smartphones.

Avatar 3
With the maturing of microlearning based training approaches, mobile learning saw an acceleration of its adoption for formal structured training. The microlearning-based approach enables a learning path or a learning journey that has multiple, bite-sized nuggets (2–5 mins each). Microlearning can be used as effectively for informal and social learning.

Alongside the wider adoption of mobile learning from a user’s perspective, the supporting tools and technologies to craft high-impact mobile learning strategies have also matured. You can choose from one of the following formats (depending on how the content will be consumed by the learners):

  • Mobile friendly (adaptive designs)
  • Mobile first (fully responsive designs)

What Learning Strategies Can Be Used To Create Effective Mobile Learning Based Corporate Training?

I share a list of my top 5 strategies that will enable you to create corporate training that will create the following impact:

  • Provide high engagement
  • Enable a better recall and retention
  • Ensure a higher application of acquired learning
  • Show a demonstrable gain for learners and business
  • Promote Social or collaborative learning

With the sustained use of these 5 learning mobile learning strategies for corporate training, you can increase the impact of your mobile training solutions manifold. You will also see a positive impact on your ROI.

Interestingly, these techniques can be used in tandem, and you can leverage on them to create an effective “Learning and Performance Support Ecosystem”.

1. Mobile learning strategy 1 – Use microlearning
Create learning paths and learning journeys to offer short, nugget based formal training as well as Performance Support Tools (PSTs or job aids) to support learners as they apply the acquired learning.

Use microlearning Use microlearning

2. Mobile learning strategy 2 – Gamification for serious learning
Combine microlearning with gamification for serious learning and see higher engagement and better retention of your corporate training. This too can be used for both formal training or as Performance Support Tools (PSTs or job aids).

Gamification for serious learning

Gamification for serious learning

3. Mobile learning strategy 3 – Leverage on video-based learning
You can use the power of video-based learning to embellish a traditional eLearning course. In its format as microlearning videos, they can be part of a learning path and can be used to set the context, to explain a concept, to solve a problem, or as a learning summary.

Leverage on video-based learning

4. Mobile learning strategy 4 – Facilitate social or collaborative learning
Use the mobile devices and groups to promote, share, and recommend learning nuggets. They can be used effectively to support formal training or as an effective channel to promote informal learning.

Facilitate social or collaborative learning

Facilitate social or collaborative learning

5. Mobile learning strategy 5 – Personalization
Leverage on the granularity of microlearning based learning paths and offer personalized learning journeys.


Can Mobile Learning Strategies Be Used For All Corporate Training Needs?

Mobile learning can be applied to support all your corporate training needs ranging from:

  1. Formal training
  2. Performance support
  3. Collaborative or social learning
  4. Supplementing Instructor-Led Training (ILT)

At EI Design, we have created mobile learning solutions for the entire spectrum of corporate training needs including:

  1. Induction and onboarding
  2. Compliance
  3. Soft skills
  4. Product training
  5. Application simulations
  6. Behavioral change
  7. Change management

I hope this article provides good insights on the impact you can create with mobile learning. I hope the featured mobile learning strategies will aid you in designing high-impact corporate training.


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Mobile Learning – Switch Your Flash Based E-learning Courses to HTML5

In the earlier era, there is a thought-provoking in everyone’s mind that the computer is used only in multi-national companies and some industries where software employees use it for their business expansion. Over the years, the technology has revolutionized and it has created amazing tools and given access to common people. In the rupture, there…

Updated eLearning Trends In 2018—Featuring 4 Parameters To Help You Select The Right One!

In June 2018, I re-looked at the eLearning Trends for 2018 that I had created in January 2018. In this article, I share my insights on the trends, viewing them through a different lens that you too can use as you plan for the balance part of the year.

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6 Takeaways From Over 6000 Hours Of Custom eLearning Development

This article is triggered by our global ranking in the Top 10 eLearning Content Development Companies For 2015. This recognition coincides with completion of over 6000 hours of custom eLearning development by us and I take this opportunity to reflect on what has worked and what should be our focus areas in the future.

EI Design 6 Takeaways from Over 6000 Hours of Custom eLearning Development

Custom eLearning Development: 6 Takeaways From Our Experience

In this article, I look back at our journey and share 6 important takeaways from our extensive experience in custom eLearning development.

1. Focus on customers and ensuring that we retain and grow with them.

High customer retention is what we are most proud of. Our growth has largely been driven by relationships that began with one-off projects and slowly grew to a strategic partnership. We continue to build from here and every six months we meet our key customers and show “what more is possible”.

2. Learners remain our focal point.

Through our learner-centric, innovative, and immersive learning designs and solutions, we help learners to:

  • Enjoy the courses.
  • Go through challenges that keep them intrigued all through the learning path.
  • Internalize the learning and practically apply it on the job.
  • Enhance their performance and deliver better results.

We focus on efficacy and application of learning to ensure that a clear business gain for organizations is established. We bring our TNA and solution architecting expertise into play to chalk out the path for a positive ROI for our customers.

Our mantra is to bring in a culture of “Learning as a continuum” and for this we use a Learning and Performance based Ecosystem approach.

3. Innovation and exploration.

We have invested extensively on two enablers, Innovation and Exploration, that help us differentiate our learning and performance solutions. Our Innovation team focuses on:

  1. Evaluation of emerging tools and technologies.
  2. Evaluation of learner needs and expectations.
  3. Determining how these pointers can be practically used to enhance learning experiences.

This year, the team has created two innovative products:

  1. Online Review Tool (integrated with the course).
  2. Digital Workbook (To enhance the ILT delivery).

4. Agile development methodology.

We have been using an agile methodology for several years to meet the ever-evolving and changing customer expectations.

We are currently in the process of applying the Kanban approach to our Project Management. Additionally, we are in the last mile of our Corporate Quality Certification (CMMi).

5. Our Offshore Development model.

As an offshore development partner based out of India and servicing customers over 16 countries across the world, our Offshore Development Framework is one of the most mature and agile one. While it has a strong core of process definition, it is flexible enough to be aligned quickly to meet our diverse customer needs.

6. The power of our team.

Last but not the least, what has really worked is the cumulative power of our team that continuously works towards customer delight.

Behind every single course that goes on to incite the “wow” response from our customers is a well-oiled team mechanism at work. Right from getting the requirements right to delivering the final product, each and every member of our team brings in that significant value at various stages of the development cycle.

What’s next: We are in the midst of a cutting edge research to come up with a predictive Learnability Index for custom eLearning and mLearning development which will be a unique concept in the industry.

The distinct effort that our Innovation and Exploration team puts in provides the required pointers for our Solution Architecting team in creating newer and unique Learning solutions.


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