Proofreading and Editing Your eLearning Course
Let's face it, editing eLearning courses can be a pain, not to mention the fact it is absolutely necessary. Without a thorough round of proofreading, chances are the finished eLearning deliverable just isn't going to be an accurate representation of your talent or expertise. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to make the process less time consuming and more productive, so that you can turn in top notch eLearning deliverables every time.
- Be aware of the mistakes you commonly make.
Each of us has our strong points. However, there are also weaknesses that we possess which can lead to recurrent mistakes in our eLearning courses. For example, if spelling isn't necessarily our strong suit, we may find that there are a variety of spelling mistakes throughout our content. This is why it's important to be aware of the mistakes you commonly make, so that you can be on the lookout for them as you proofread and edit your eLearning course. While it's important to focus on all aspects of your eLearning course when you're preparing it for submission, it's always worthwhile to pay extra close attention to the areas that may need a bit more polishing.
- Remember that proofreading involves multiple steps not just one quick read.
In order to find all errors and make sure your writing is concise and clear, you're going to need to proofread it multiple times. In fact, you may want to break the process up into smaller editing and proofreading sessions, so that you don't become overwhelmed by the task and don't miss crucial mistakes. It may be wise to set aside time in your schedule for different parts of the eLearning course. For example, you can devote an hour on Monday to editing the first module, and then another hour on Wednesday to the second. This will give you the opportunity to take your time, while still increasing your eLearning productivity. Keep in mind that it's a process that can't be rushed, but is well worth all of the time and effort you put in.
- Trim down lengthy sentences to make them concise.
As you go through your eLearning course, pay careful attention to not only what it is written, but also how it's been presented. Remember that cognitive overload is typically an issue if you are dealing with lengthy blocks of text. So, keep things short and simple. If you notice any run-on sentences that may cause learner confusion, then trim them down. If there is an abundance of information that you need to cover, use bullet points to make it more digestible.
- Read the content aloud.
While you are proofreading your eLearning course, you'll probably want to read it aloud at least once. Something may look good on the screen, but you may discover that it's confusing or ambiguous when you read it aloud. You may even want to try recording yourself reading it and then play it back while you scan the text. This can help you to ensure that the content flows well and that the pace is smooth.
- Don't rely on spell check to catch all of the errors.
In a perfect world, the spell and grammar checking tools would catch every error in your eLearning course. However, since this isn't the case, you'll want to go over your entire eLearning course thoroughly in order to catch any errors that these tools have missed. While this can be time consuming, it can also make a world of difference in the quality of your finished eLearning deliverable. If you don't have the time to do this step yourself, then you may want to delegate the task or even hire an editor to go through it with a fine-toothed comb to fix any remaining spelling and grammar mistakes.
- Set the project aside before giving it one last read.
You need to put some distance between you and the eLearning course itself, especially if you've been working on it for quite some time. So, it's often best to set it aside for a day or two before giving it one final proofread. This will allow you to look at it with fresh eyes and catch any errors that you may have missed during previous readings. Also, if at all possible, try to get someone else to proofread it as well. It's difficult to be objective about work that you've created, and letting someone else proofread it may help you to strengthen weak points and catch errors that you tend to make on a regular basis.
- Don't wait until the day of the deadline.
For those who have a tendency to wait until the last minute to edit, this last tip for editing your eLearning course may prove to be quite challenging. If you wait until the day of the deadline to do your editing and proofreading, chances are that you're going to miss errors and, more importantly, have to deal with unnecessary stress and worry. Try to get the vast majority of your editing done at least a couple days in advance. Then, you can take your time looking over it one last time before you send it off. Also, if you find that you don't have extra time to spare on the day of the deadline, you can have the peace of mind of knowing that all of your editing has already been taken care of.
Taking the time to proofread and edit your eLearning course can help to ensure that it offers the most value to your audience and surpasses the expectations of your clients. Just remember that your portfolio is only as strong as your least polished project, so always be sure to check, then double check, every aspect of your eLearning course before its submission.
Knowing which mistakes to look out for can help you to make the proofreading process even less stressful and more productive. The article Writing Mistakes to Look for When Proofreading Your e-Learning Course highlights 8 common writing mistakes that you'll want to be aware of when proofreading your next eLearning deliverable.
In addition, in the article Ultimate eLearning Course Design Checklist you will find a comprehensive "must-have" eLearning checklist for your eLearning projects?
This post was first published on eLearning Industry.
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3 Ways Organizations Can Improve The Way They Measure Training Effectiveness
According to ASTD, the overall spending on employee training in the US is $165 billion and the average employee receives 30.3 hours of learning per year. The average cost to train each employee is $1,195.
What do these numbers tell us? Organizations care about training. Period. With so much effort devoted to training, the real question becomes evident: Did anyone really learn?
It’s clear that learning and development professionals are struggling to answer this question – a question we simply can’t afford to ignore any longer.
The days of measuring learning based on multiple-choice questions are gone. This type of measurement is focused on short-term retention of knowledge as opposed to a long-term ability to apply knowledge. Ultimately, the goal of corporate learning should not only to see a return on the investment of training, but to improve the skill sets of PEOPLE!
In today’s world, the ability to successfully DO something absolutely trumps the ability to pass a test. With the rapidly growing need to get employees educated and running at peak performance, organizations need to focus on other ways to measure learning is taking place. This will allow them to focus their time, energy and resources on training initiatives that move the needle.
Here are 3 ways to measure training effectiveness:
- Visual Confirmation
In traditional trainings, learners demonstrate their knowledge by performing a role-play. Technology allows us to take role-plays a step further. Instead of demonstrating knowledge that may or may not be true to the learner’s job, learners now have the ability to share visual confirmation they’ve completed a task in real life. Imagine employees uploading a video or audio recording and/or submitting other visual proof of a task completed (for example a screen shot or video via smartphone). Now, imagine a training manager having access to those videos (and other visual proof) of employees using knowledge from a workshop in real life. Visual confirmation doesn’t only change HOW learning is measured, it can also impact the way we train by honing in on the most effective training initiatives and taking the closer look at those initiatives that aren’t “measuring up.”
- Social Ownership
The ability to teach others is one of the highest forms of mastery of a subject. Social Ownership puts learners in the position to teach others by showing how they apply concepts in their real world. This concept not only engages employees to teach and learn from each other, it also gives training managers the ability to measure how well concepts are being implemented within the organization. These peer-teaching moments can be captured via video or by having peer-peer workshops. Ultimately providing a new way to get employees involved and engaged to increase training effectiveness.
- Skill Assessments
Creating a visual assessment of an employee’s skill set and performance before and after a training moment. These snapshots, or skylines, of a learner’s abilities can give a clear picture of performance and skill improvements you can directly tie to training. A simple example would be, testing a sales person’s current sales skills prior to training, then retesting the individual after the event to see the delta. There are so many improvements going on in this area right now because of data analytics, it’s a good one to jump on ahead of the curve.
These are just 3 ways organizations can improve the way they measure training effectiveness. We’d love to hear how you measure learning in your organization so we can continually be improving www.weskill.com
This post was first published on eLearning Industry.
OER-Konferenz 2014. Ich zitiere einfach den Begleittext und empfehle den Zusammenschnitt in 5:54 Minuten.
“Potentiale, Potentiale!”, ruft es laut aus den Sälen der Urania in Berlin. Anlass ist die OERde14: die Konferenz zur Zukunft freier Bildungsmaterialien, zu der Wikimedia Deutschland am 12. und 13. September einlud. Dieses Jahr lag der Fokus vor allem darauf, neben der schon bestehenden “Pionier”-Community aus der Praxis, auch Multiplikator_Innen aus Wissenschaft und Politik mit ins Boot zu holen und gemeinsam in eine kritisch-reflektierte Zukunft freier Bildungsmaterialien zu steuern. Die Werkstatt der bpb war natürlich mit offenen Ohren und Augen dabei und hat für alle Interessierten einen Einblick im 16:9-Format zusammengestellt.”
werkstatt.bpb.de, 29. September 2014
“What we know today will get us to tomorrow, but we’ll have to learn more again tomorrow to keep ahead … welcome to the Social Age, where change is constant and we live in constant beta.”
I’ve never thought about learning like this before, other than I know I get bored quickly so find new things to keep me engaged and entertained. But, with the constant bombardment of new technologies, new networks, new applications to old techniques, etc. we are indeed in ‘constant beta’.
And I mean ‘we’ in the context of learning professionals (which I’m exploring with my next book project: follow here for news -#EdTechBook) that we need to not only keep up with developments but somehow keep ahead of them. I know this is near impossible, but we can at least be proactive in how we approach the changes, reflect on our own experiences, and make suggestions and engage with each other (and the students). From this will come better understanding and a clearer picture of what could be used, how, where, why, and (importantly) by whom.
This is why Julian Stodd’s book The Social Leadership Handbook is another book that has found it’s way on to my reading list.
Whilst Julian has clearly aimed the handbook at leaders and managers I see it resonating so closely with those of us who work across disciplines, as we often need to exhibit skills more aligned to management than technical.
“The Social Age is about high levels of engagement through informal, socially collaborative technology. It supports agility by allowing many and varied connections and the rapid iteration of ideas in communities that are ‘sense making’.”
Julian’s NET model is built around three themes, or dimensions. These are ‘narrative’, ‘engagement’, and ‘technology’. You see now why I think this is such an important book for learning professionals? Just this concept could be used to explain the role of a Learning technologist – we need to curate to share our knowledge (‘narrative’), we manage our networks, reputation, and communities (‘engagement’), and we use social collaboration and reach to learn more than we already know (‘technology’). And it doesn’t stop, we keep cycling through the three stages, not spending the same amount of time in each phase, each time we reach it, but moving and shaping our own learning, and thus the learning of those who we encounter and interact.
“Technology facilitates the experience, it facilitates learning, but doesn’t guarantee it … you can control the technology, but you can’t control the conversation, and when push comes to shove, it’s the conversation that counts. Technology is transient and adaptable. I can just bring my own device.”
I have not had chance to read the whole book properly but I know enough already that this will have an impact on hows I think about myself, my work, and how I approach the different elements: “the [NET Model] circle represents an agile journey .. once we have mastered the skills, we continue to refine them.”
Main image source: Julian Stodd / SeaSalt Learning
In dieser Special Edition der eLearning Papers sind zwölf ausgesuchte Artikel des letzten Jahres noch einmal zusammengefasst. Thematische Schwerpunkte bilden MOOCs und Personal Learning Environments. Weitere Artikel setzen sich z.B. mit Digital Competence (lesenswert: “DIGCOMP: a Framework for Developing and Understanding Digital Competence in Europe”), Maker Movement und Gamification auseinander. Wie heißt es im Editorial so schön:
“Open technologies allow all individuals to learn, anywhere, anytime, through any device, with the support of anyone. Open educational resources, and especially MOOCs, provide alternative ways for students to gain new knowledge. … Today’s learners expect more personalisation, collaboration and better links between formal and informal learning.”
eLearning Papers, Special edition 2014, 29. September 2014
"Virtual Worlds – Simulation or Reality?" by Deslie Ann Osborn
Vocational education in Australia is focused on workplace learning – learning that either occurs in the workplace or in a context that emulates or simulates the workplace environment. The types and formats of simulated environments are many and varied – some take the form of written case studies, scenarios and role plays while others play out in simulated training rooms with equipment and life-like mannequins – the ultimate goal being to assist the learner to learn the skills necessary for work. And these simulations are for the most part successful at achieving the goal – except for the real world experience that comes from interacting with real people in real time.
The virtual world does ‘represent the behaviours and characteristics of one system through another’ and enables ‘the act or process of pretending’ – some key characteristics of simulation. But it’s in the online interactions inside the virtual world that the line between simulation and reality becomes blurred. Is it still a simulation when the interactions are no longer ‘staged’? They are real. Real interactions between real people – completely spontaneous and ‘in the moment’, occurring in real time. Is it then reality? And why does it matter?
If what we are trying to achieve is as close to reality as possible for the most genuine of learning experiences where workplace learning is not an option, then surely virtual world environments are the ultimate in educational spaces. There are barriers to this type of learning, but from our experience, virtual worlds are a serious contender for high quality, simulated, reality learning.
Ms Deslie Ann Osborn is one of the speakers at LEARNTech Asia 2014. LEARNTech Asia 2014 will be held in Singapore at the Marina Bay Sands (13-14 November 2014). For more information on the conference, please visit http://learntechconf.com/.
This post was first published on eLearning Industry.