Do These Two Things to Create Effective E-Learning

learning objectives for effective e-learning

Most e-learning courses have some sort of stated learning objective. Ideally, the course is designed to meet the objective. From my experience, many of the objectives in e-learning courses aren’t very actionable. They lack clarity and most importantly, they lack measurement. And those are the two things you can do to ensure your e-learning courses are effective.

Create Clear Learning Objectives for Effective E-Learning

Many times we’ll see learning objectives like this: understand company policies or learn how to give feedback. These types of objectives are fuzzy. What does “understand” or “learn” mean?

Objectives should be more specific, such as, a new manager applies X policy in Y situation. The objective identifies the learner, what will be covered, and when it will be used.

Measure Understanding of Objectives for Effective E-Learning

When crafting learning objectives, you should at the same time think about how they are measured. If the goal is for the manager to understand company policies, then there has to be a way to prove understanding. Going back to the point above, the manager applies the correct policy in a given situation.

Thus, if you want to determine how well the manager understands a given policy, you craft a situation in which she has to apply it correctly. At this point, you have a way to measure understanding.

When outlining course objectives, step away from the fuzzy terms and focus on actionable words that also guide you towards a means of measurement. This helps you craft the right objectives, pull in the right content and activities, and build a way to properly assess understanding.


Download the fully revised, free 63-page ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro

Upcoming E-Learning Events


Free E-Learning Resources

Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.

Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs

Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills

Get your free PowerPoint templates and free graphics & stock images.

Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.

Getting Started? This elearning 101 series and the free e-books will help.

 

How to Create Performance-based E-Learning

performance-based e-learning

E-learning courses generally fall into one of two buckets: tell people something or show them how to do something. One is all about the information and the other about performance. Both approaches have value.

The reality is that a lot of e-learning is information-based and mostly driven by compliance requirements. Outside of certification of completion, there’s little performance requirement other than compliance to the policies or directives.

For example, generally you don’t have an organization full of sexual harassers and then present a course on sexual harassment and all of a sudden they’re no longer harassing. Instead, the course informs about sexual harassment and the organization’s standard. And the expectation is compliance to that standard. In that sense, the course is information-based because other than compliance, there’s not a performance expectation.

Performance-based E-Learning

On the other side are performance-based courses where the goal is to change behaviors or teach new skills. Those are courses that make a difference (in the sense that one goes from A to B). So how do you know those courses will make a difference?

Here are a few key thoughts to help get there.

  • What are the business objectives?
  • Why aren’t they meeting those goals today?
  • What training do they currently receive (if any)? Why hasn’t it worked?
  • How is the course linked to meeting the objectives?
  • What do you expect the learners to do after the course that they’re not doing today?
  • How will you measure the success of the course?

Performance-based courses are tied to the performance requirements: what are they supposed to do to meet X objective?

Focus on the performance requirement and the actions associated with it. Then build your training around that. In a sense, I like the course to “throw people into the pool.” This gets them to make the types of decisions they’ll make in the real world. If the course is performance-based, design it around those decisions rather than pages of content and policies. All of that content is important, but you can tease it out in the decision-making process and subsequent consequences.

Courses make a difference when they make things different. If you course doesn’t change behaviors or teach new skills, then it’s probably not performance-based. And how you approach the design of it is different than just pushing out information.


Download the fully revised, free 63-page ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro

Upcoming E-Learning Events


Free E-Learning Resources

Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.

Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs

Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills

Get your free PowerPoint templates and free graphics & stock images.

Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.

Getting Started? This elearning 101 series and the free e-books will help.

 

KI@Ed noch nicht in der Fläche angekommen

Das mmb Institut hat die Ergebnisse ihrer jährlichen Befragung, das „mmb Learning Delphi“, veröffentlicht. Schon zum vierzehnten Mal wurden ExpertInnen gebeten, die Trends und Themen einzuschätzen, die in Zukunft das digitale Lernen bestimmen werden. 61 ExpertInnen haben sich im Winter 2019/ 2020 an der Befragung beteiligt.

Nun gibt das mmb Institut ja schon mit dem Titel ihres Trendmonitors eine Richtung vor. Das ist in diesem Jahr, auch 2019 klang es schon an, „Künstliche Intelligenz“. Allerdings fehlt hier, von Learning Analytics bis Adaptive Learning, nach wir vor das konkrete Anschauungsmaterial, was mich kurz überlegen lässt, ob das Delphi hier nach einem Trend fragt oder einen Trend setzen möchte. Aber weiter im Text …

Mein Lieblings-Schaubild listet die Lernformen auf, die in den kommenden Jahren nach Ansicht der ExpertInnen in Unternehmen an Bedeutung gewinnen werden. Hier stehen „Videos/ Erklärfilme“ ganz oben (94 Prozent), gefolgt von „Micro Learning/ Learning Nuggets“ (92 Prozent) und „Blended Learning“ (90 Prozent). In der Lesehilfe des mmb Instituts erfährt man, dass sich Web-based Trainings etwas gefangen haben, dass Augmented Reality ein Gewinner der letzten Saison ist, Lernformen des kollaborativen Lernens Rückgänge verzeichnen und Serious Games auf dem letzten Platz stehen. Tendenz fallend.

Weitere Ergebnisse betreffen die Einschätzung allgemeiner Trends im Corporate Learning. Interessant:
„Slack, Teams und Co. werden noch wichtiger: 71 Prozent der befragten Expertinnen und Experten sind der Ansicht, dass diese Kommunikationstools die Austausch- und Lernkultur in Unternehmen bestimmen werden (Vorjahr 62%). Arbeiten und Lernen werden so stärker miteinander verknüpft.“

Auch nach der Bedeutung „nationaler Veranstaltungen für die E-Learning-Branche“ wurde gefragt. Hier führt die LEARNTEC natürlich unverändert die Liste an. Aber die Corporate Learning Camps konnten ihren zweiten Platz noch einmal verbessern – von 49 auf 59 Prozent! Es folgen Zukunft Personal und didacta.

Es gibt viele weitere Auswertungen, auf die ich hier nicht näher eingehe. Sie betreffen zum Beispiel den kommerziellen Erfolg von Anwendungen, die Themen und Inhalte des digitalen Lernens, Zielgruppen, Prüfungsformen und noch mehrmals Künstliche Intelligenz. Genug Stoff zum Diskutieren …
mmb Institut, mmb-Trendmonitor 2019/ 2020, Februar 2020

Why You Need to Know Who’s the Boss of the E-Learning Course

e-learning decision maker

You just spent months working on an e-learning project. You tested it. Got feedback. Made adjustments. And now you’re ready to launch.

But then the person for whom you’ve been building the project says, “Before we launch, let’s get my manager’s approval.”

And at that point, things to start to unravel. The boss wants to make changes. The legal team gets involved. Marketing comes into make sure the messaging is right. And so it goes.

This stuff happens. We’ve all been there.

When building an e-learning course, one of the first things to do is find out who the final authority of the project is and get that person involved right away. You need to understand why the course exists and what it will take to get it launched.

A few core goals when meeting with the final authority:

  • Clarify objectives
  • Identify metrics for success
  • Determine the review and approval process
  • Get an approved budget

Above is a list of a few considerations, but there are plenty more. The main thing is to get the key decision makers involved early and identify who is the final authority. From there determine the scope of the project and get an agreed upon service level agreement or contract.

And then work from that.

Don’t let your project slip away without those details and be derailed right before you’re done.

Two questions:

  • What types of things derail your e-learning projects?
  • What process do you use to come to an agreement before starting?

Download the fully revised, free 63-page ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro

Upcoming E-Learning Events


Free E-Learning Resources

Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.

Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs

Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills

Get your free PowerPoint templates and free graphics & stock images.

Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.

Getting Started? This elearning 101 series and the free e-books will help.

 

The effect of using Kahoot! for learning – A literature review

Wer es nicht kennt: „Kahoot! is a game-based learning platform used to review students‘ knowledge, for formative assessment or as a break from traditional classroom activities.“ Kahoot gibt es seit 2013. Heute wird es von 70 Millionen Menschen im Monat genutzt. Eine Zeit gelang gehörte ich dazu, habe damit gerne längere Workshop- oder Seminar-Sessions aufgelockert, bevor ich zuletzt vor den immer energischeren Upgrade-Aufrufen kapituliert habe.

Im Rahmen einer Literaturanalyse haben nun die AutorInnen 93 Studien untersucht, die sich mit dem Nutzen von Kahoot beschäftigt haben. Es ist eine sehr lange und detaillierte Analyse. Deshalb zitiere ich hier die beiden wichtigsten Absätze aus den zusammenfassenden Highlights:

„- Main conclusion is that Kahoot! has a positive effect on learning performance, classroom dynamics, attuites, and anxiety.
– Main challenges include technical problems, see questions and answers, time stress, afraid of losing, and hard to catch up.“

Empfehlen kann ich den Artikel auch, weil die AutorInnen in ihrer Einführung Kahoot kurz in die Geschichte der Student Response – Systeme einbetten und auch verschiedene Alternativen auf dem (englischsprachigen) Markt nennen.
Alf Inge Wang und Rabail Tahir, Computers & Education, Vol 149, Mai 2020 (via ScienceDirect)

Bildquelle: www.create.kahoot.it

Deutliche Wachstumsdynamik im deutschen E-Learning-Markt

37 Unternehmen haben dieses Jahr am Branchenmonitor der E-Learning-Wirtschaft teilgenommen, durchgeführt vom mmb Institut. Zu verzeichnen sind: 14 Prozent Umsatzwachstum, das „Anbieten bzw. Verkaufen von digitalen Lerninhalten und E-Learning-Kursen“ als stärkstes Geschäftsfeld und eine „Verschiebung“ zugunsten von Off -the-shelf-Produkten. WBS Training, ComCave Group und SAP Education führen die Liste der umsatzstärksten Anbieter an. Wie jedes Jahr gilt: Der E-Learning-Markt ist ein offenes, dynamisches Feld, und der Branchenmonitor eine jährliche Gratwanderung. Die Teilnahme bzw. Nicht-Teilnahme eines einzigen Anbieters reicht manchmal aus, um einen Trend loszutreten.
mmb Institut, mmb-Branchenmonitor „E-Learning-Wirtschaft“ 2019, Januar 2020

Digital innovation in education | Learning in a Digital Society

Vorneweg: Ich mag das Format und den Erzähler, hier Geoff Stead, Chief Product Officer bei Babbel. Seine Botschaft: „Digital learning is happening right now“ (siehe die 20 Millionen MOOC-Lerner!), und wir müssen es „nur“ schaffen, dieses Enthusiasmus auch in die Seminarräume bzw. die  Klassenzimmer zu bringen.

Die Video-Serie, die mit dem Beitrag von Geoff Stead startet, wird unter dem Dach der niederländischen Forschungsinitiative „The Digital Society“ von der Open Universiteit und dem Centre for Education and Learning (CEL) at Leiden-Delft-Erasmus entwickelt (via Graham Attwell).
Digital Society, YouTube, 20. Januar 2020 

 

Rethinking E-Learning Templates

e-learning template

E-learning templates can be a bit challenging. On one hand, they speed up production. And then on the other they may introduce constraints in the learning experience design.

An e-learning course screen has a specific structure. It’s usually rectangular and contains text and imagery. The text and imagery are laid out on the screen and is constrained by up, down, left and right placement. Of course, the possibilities for layouts can be endless, but there are probably just a few dozen layouts that make sense for e-learning courses.

Here are a couple of recent posts where we discussed the anatomy of e-learning templates and how to get the most value out of templates.

E-learning Template Value

Templates work for repetitive processes because they can be used over and over again. For example, most courses have some sort of simple list of learning objectives. While the course content may change, those course screens are usually consistent.

E-learning Template Constraints

Courses consist of content that is contextual. And from a learning experience, that contextual content has specific teaching requirements. For example, if I teach how to use software, then the screens are dependent on screenshots. And if I teach how to interact with a customer, the visual context is best represented in a manner similar to how you may interact with the customer.

I may find some good general layouts for simple content, but as soon as I have to work with specific content, I find that there’s a lot of tweaking and adjustments made to the templates that may mean I save more time just starting from scratch.

E-Learning Template Hybrids

I like to separate my templates into three parts and find the most value in using templates in the first and third.

  • Entering the course
  • Course content
  • Exiting the course

Most courses have the same or similar starting points with welcome screens, instructions, objectives, sections, etc. And they also have similar exit points such as summary screens, next steps, and exit instructions.

Those two parts, the entering and exiting of courses, are perfect for templates. The templates are easy to insert, update, and contextualize. The middle part that deals with the actual course content is different.

Course content templates are great for simple text layouts. They break down as the content design becomes more specific. That’s fine, just use templates for the beginning and end and for simple text. But don’t waste time trying to force content into a template. Or worse, don’t create a template and force the course authors to make the content comply with a template.

Templates are great for e-learning. However, they exist to save time. Keeping templates for easy-to-repeat screens makes sense. Forcing content to fit templates probably doesn’t. But that’s OK. Just use the template screens where you need them and start with blank screens where they need customization. Don’t waste time fitting a square peg into a round hole.


Download the fully revised, free 63-page ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro

Upcoming E-Learning Events


Free E-Learning Resources

Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.

Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs

Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills

Get your free PowerPoint templates and free graphics & stock images.

Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.

Getting Started? This elearning 101 series and the free e-books will help.

 

Four Reasons Why You Need to Unlock Your Course

unlock navigation

“We have to lock the course. If we don’t, the people will just skip all of the content until they get to the end.”

If you build e-learning courses, you probably hear this all the time. But here’s why you need to unlock your course.

Being Exposed to Information Isn’t the Same as Learning

Just because people are forced into the content doesn’t mean they’re learning from it. Reading, seeing, or hearing information is just a small part of the learning experience.

Locking the course navigation can only measure a person’s access to the content. It can’t measure their attention span or their understanding of the content.

People See the Content Based on Previous Experience

Experience and bias cloud our understanding of what we learn. A new learner may struggle to figure out what goes where and when. And a more experience learner is plugging information into predefined boxes and categories.

Locking course navigation assumes everyone approaches the content the same way and at the same speed. A new person may need more time, whereas a more tenured person can quickly skim and move on. Trying to control the navigation creates a frustrating experience.

Some People Need Context

Personally before I learn something new, I like to gain a big picture understanding. For example, if I get a new resource book, I skim in, look over the chapters, check out illustrations, and perhaps glance in the back and references. This helps me get a sense of what’s in there and where things will go.

I like the same when I take online training. I want to build some context which helps me know how everything fits together. It throws me off, if I am forced to go through the content A to Z with no ability to jump around and peek a bit.

Odds are you have a lot of learners who feel the same way. Some want to review everything. Some need a lot of information. Some want to touch and play around a bit.

Open the course up and let those who want to jump to activities to go there and vice versa.

Focus on Understanding

The ultimate objective is that the person learns. The key is getting them to demonstrate their level of understanding. Instead of focusing on screen after screen of content and locking the navigation, create the locks around activities where they can demonstrate their understanding.

For example, let them skip reading company policies. Instead, have them apply the policy to a relevant situation. You can lock the course at that point. They need to complete X activity to demonstrate that they understand the policy. Give them freedom to move around to learn and collect what they need. But lock the course based on the activity that measures their understanding.


Download the fully revised, free 63-page ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro

Upcoming E-Learning Events

2020

Free E-Learning Resources

Want to learn more? Check out these articles and free resources in the community.

Here’s a great job board for elearning, instructional design, and training jobs

Participate in the weekly elearning challenges to sharpen your skills

Get your free PowerPoint templates and free graphics & stock images.

Lots of cool elearning examples to check out and find inspiration.

Getting Started? This elearning 101 series and the free e-books will help.

 

The 100 Worst Ed-Tech Debacles of the Decade

Audrey Watters hat den Jahreswechsel zum Anlass genommen, um wieder etwas zu publizieren. Dabei hat sie ihre Jahresrückblicke der Jahre 2010 bis 2019 genommen und eine umfassende Liste erstellt: „chronicle for you a decade of ed-tech failures and fuck-ups and flawed ideas“.

Wer Audrey Watters kennt, kennt auch ihren kritischen Blick. Der gilt aber nicht der Sache „EdTech“, sondern der Industrie, ihren Versprechungen, ihren Verschleierungen und ihrer Ignoranz gegenüber der Geschichte von EdTech. Eine Liste mit 100 Einträgen aus einem Jahrzehnt bedeutet natürlich auch, dass es keinen Trend gibt, der hier heil davon kommt. Vom Flipped Classroom über Badges bis zu Interaktiven Whiteboards. Auf einige Einträge konnte man wetten, wie zum Beispiel den über das Projekt „One Laptop per Child“, das ich auch an dieser Stelle viele Jahre aufmerksam begleitet (und schließlich überlebt …) habe. Einige Beiträge hängt sie an Schlagworten auf, die für einige Zeit die Runde machten, wie „Unbundling Education“ oder „Uber for Education“. Einige widmet sie direkt einzelnen Tools und Plattformen wie Ning, Google Reader und AltSchool. Andere hängt sie populären Forderungen wie „Everyone Should Learn to Code“ auf.

Aber am tiefsten holt sie Luft, als es um MOOCs (4. „The Year of the MOOC“) geht: „The New York Times declared 2012 “the Year of the MOOC.” And I chose „The Year of the MOOC“ rather than „The MOOC“ as the big disaster because I wanted to underscore how much of the problem here was the PR, the over-promising and the universities and startups believing their own hype. …
Investors continued to fund MOOCs nonetheless. … But even with all that venture capital to keep the lights on, MOOCs have had to look for some sort of revenue model. So gone — mostly gone, at least — are the free online courses. Gone are the free certificates. The MOOC revolution simply wasn’t.“

Ihre Liste endet, reichlich desillusioniert, mit einem Eintrag über die Amokläufe an amerikanischen Schulen.
Audrey Watters, Hack Education, 31. Dezember 2019

Bildquelle: Robert Claypool (Flickr, CC BY 2.0)