It's time for another edition of the Learning and Development Roundup! (See also previous editions at the archive page.)
Jane Bozarth Introduces TrainingBookReview.com
Industry veteran and expert author Jane Bozarth has started a new website called TrainingBookReview.com. This is a new blog, sponsored by HRDQ. Bozarth was for some 10 years a book review writer for Training magazine, and describes that at this new blog she will be reviewing "a few new books," but also have a focus, at least to start, "on some classics in the L&D literature." She has kicked things off with a review of Figuring Things Out: A Trainer’s Guide to Needs and Task Analysis (Zemke & Kramlinger, 1982). For fans of Jane's book reviews, know that she continues to also review books focused on e-Learning at her new column with Learning Solutions magazine, the latest of which is a review of Clark Aldrich's new book The Complete Guide to Simulations and Serious Games. Keep up the great work Jane!
Ten Myths About Video in E-Learning
And speaking of the online Learning Solutions magazine, it recently had a two-part article by Stephen Haskin titled "Ten Myths About Video in E-Learning." In part 1, he takes on what he considers to be myths such as the issue of Mac versus PC for creating videos, the software available, whether you need a streaming server to play your videos, and the issue of mobile devices. In part 2, he covers topics including HD, internal networks, frame rates, and importantly, the cost and skills required for video production. Although the topics covered are broader than the use of video in e-Learning contexts alone, Haskin has done e-Learning developers a service by sharing insights on so many issues of video production in one place.
What Will Workplace Learning Technology Look Like in 2015?
That was the "big" question posed for the month of May at ASTD's Learning Circuits blog. Responses to this provocative question came pouring in, and by now include postings from Tony Karrer, Clark Quinn, Clive Shepherd, and many others. Note to self: check back in five years to see who was correct!
Better Design Doesn't Take Longer
And speaking of Clark Quinn, in a recent article at eLearn magazine, "Better Design Doesn't Take Longer!", he argues in favor of better design in the development of learning content. He makes his case on the grounds that it really doesn't take any longer to produce well-designed content and learning experiences, and obviously (almost by definition) good designs will yield better outcomes. He admits the one caveat to his position about it not taking any longer: "after an initial transition period." That is, he is arguing for a long-range perspective, by noting that an investment in some time up front can be more than justified by the benefits you will reap in the future.
An Interesting Take on the iPad from a Usability Guru
And speaking of design, Jakob Nielsen is a very well-known usability expert. So when he publishes a 93-page report on the usability of the latest technology wonder device, it is worth your time to pause and at least hear what he has to say. You can download this report for free, or if time is short at the moment, start by simply reading this article from the Guardian, "Jakob Nielsen critiques the iPad's usability failings." Lots of food for thought, as the Learning and Development industry begins to consider the use cases for the iPad, and future competing tablet devices too.
On the Forgetting Curve and Ways to Improve Retention
Although I recently wrote a post that linked to these two items, I wanted to again draw attention to them. On May 28, both Charles Jennings and Donald Clark wrote about a similar topic, both invoking what is known as "the Forgetting Curve." These postings are both worth reading, so here again are the links:
- "ID - Instructional Design or Interactivity Design in an interconnected world?" by Charles Jennings
- "Ten Techniques to Massively Increase Retention" by Donald Clark
On Mobile Learning
Are you up to speed on the current state, and the possibilities for the future, of mobile learning? If not, then I encourage you to read Ellen Wagner's article "When Mobility Meets Learning" from the April/May issue of Elearning! magazine. After setting the stage with a typical run down of the explosive growth of mobile devices, Wagner provides several reasons why mobile learning hasn't taken off equally as quickly. She then describes several attributes that a rich mobile learning experience will involve: ubiquity, access, richness, efficiency, flexibility, security, reliability, and interactivity. She then shares nine critical questions to ask when you are planning a mobile learning initiative -- a good list!
The Latest on Social Learning
As I noted in my reflections on the recent ASTD ICE 2010 conference, social learning is one of the hottest topics in the L&D industry today. There continues to be a great flow of good articles, postings, and resources on this important subject, so I will again list a few from recent weeks here. See also the many links in my blog posting "The Great LMS Debate," in which social learning plays a central role.
- "Implementing Social Learning" -- from the April/May issue of Elearning! magazine, this article includes descriptions of social learning from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and Telus Corporation. The latter's success with social learning was also recently described in a case-study from Microsoft here.
- "The Role of Social Networking in Advanced Blended Learning" -- from the Spring 2010 issue of Government Elearning! magazine, this article describes some ways the U.S. Army is embracing informal learning.
- "Connecting Government to Improve It" -- posted both to ASTD's blog and published in the April issue of T+D magazine.
Updates from Element K
As usual, I'll end this roundup posting with links to our newsletter service that we launched last year. Each newsletter includes several articles of relevance to the Learning and Development field, as well as updates about Element K events and our latest product releases. You can see the latest newsletters here: March, April, May, and June.