Updated Feat-cheers – Microsoft Windows 10- How Microsoft used Social Media

We have lived in a wonderful time… A time where our best friend, the Internet, came to existence with a meme and an innuendo followed by kittens and our sleep schedules!  Continue reading Updated Feat-cheers – Microsoft Windows 10- How Microsoft used Social Media

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Replace The Training Manual

While searching for social learning related articles I came across this blog titled “Replace The Training Manual:10 Ways to Improve The Experience With Social Learning”. I feel many employees do not read their training manuals upon being hired because they are overwhelmed with the amount of information being given to them at one time.  The article mentions one company has saved $75,000 by replacing their traditional training manual with a social learning approach. Below are 10 reasons to replace training manuals with social learning tools. How do you feel about replacing training manuals with a social learning solution?

Here are 10 reasons to replace your training manuals and tools with a social learning solution:

Update materials in real time. How frustrating is it that training materials are out-of-date almost as soon as they are in your employees’ hands? With an online social learning solution – materials and answers can be updated in real-time. This means that employees will always find the most current and accurate information.

Make information easier to find. By making your training materials available in an online social learning tool instead of a document, employees can easily search for the documents and answers they are looking for.

Allow employees to ask questions. By moving the training process online and making it social, employees can ask questions and the experts within your company can reply. The advantage here is that not only does the original employee who asked the question benefit, so does the rest of your organization.

Share stories. One of the strongest advantages of using a social learning tool to train employees is that training comes to life with shared stories and experiences. People can comment, interact, and connect through the tool in ways that a standalone document simply doesn’t allow.

Ongoing connections. Instead of just filing away a training manual on a bookshelf or a file folder, putting all of this information online means that it is an ongoing resource for employees. And because the information is constantly updated, questions are asked and answered, and stories are shared, there is an incentive for the employee to check back and see what is new.

Interaction with everyday experts. Social learning solutions give new and existing employees the ability to connect with experts throughout your organization – even beyond the initial training period. This is even more important if your experts are spread across multiple geographies.

Different file types all in one place. People learn in different ways. Some like to read text descriptions, others like a diagram or video. With a social learning tool, you can share videos, PowerPoint decks, images, posts, and more to engage your visitors.

Smaller, digestible pieces of information. Rather than an overwhelming document, social learning tools feed information to employees in bite-sized chunks that they can easily consume. You can even take these smaller pieces of information and create a series for people to work their way through.

Single point of data. A big challenge at most companies is knowing where to go for critical information. Knowledge sits spread across the company’s various laptops and servers. An online training hub becomes THE place where employees know they can find the most accurate, up-to-date information.

Access content anytime/anywhere from any device. A social learning solution puts training information in the hands of employees when they need it most. Knowledge becomes accessible 24 hours a day from any device.

Dogfooding? Yes.

One of the ed blogs I read, “Cult of PedagogyScreen Shot 2015-06-11 at 12.55.23 AM,” by Jennifer Gonzalez, regularly touches on straightforward ways to incorporate tech to modify and redefine the tasks our students do.  In a recent blog, she imported a term from software development lingo to apply to teaching practice and preparation:  dogfooding.  Do you dogfood? Regularly?

According to the article, dogfooding “refers to the act of using your own product as a consumer in order to work out its glitches, the metaphorical equivalent of ‘eating your own dog food.'” it goes on to say that when developers create a new app or software, they load it on to their own device to test its functionality as a user would.

She recommends that teachers incorporate dogfooding into their instructional design, that actually doing what we ask our students to do, from start to finish, is enlightening.  I would think this is especially true for tech that we ask them to use.

I would often complete the work I asked my students to do, but when I got too busy, I often skipped this step.  What about other teachers?  Do you try to follow your directions through your students’ eyes?  Complete projects that you ask them to do?  What do you think?

You can read the full post here.

Marissa Dietrich

Photo by Lou Ann Snawder, CC License here.

Looking through a “Hole-in-the-Wall”

The blog entitled “Looking through a ‘Hole-in-the-Wall'” by Dashe & Thomson is about an experiment on social learning is conducted.

The experiment goes like this: In an urban slum, there is a computer that anyone can access. How will the computer be used? The results surprised everyone. Children came in groups to increase their knowledge in academic areas they didn’t have access to in their schools.

The blogger for this post showed that even children who live in not so great conditions can learn more by using a computer rather than memorizing information from their schools.

The blogger for this post asked ” If you are hiring a candidate for a position at your company, and you are down to two people equally qualified, do you want to hire the person who has memorized information?  Or, do you want to hire someone who can find up-to-date, current information quickly and easily?”

-Kimberly Wondoloski

A Different Way to Look at Things…

How would you score your e-learning course if it was a movie?

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There are many different blogs that deal with social learning, social media, and any other subject that deals with the marriage of tech and teaching.  However, when I ran across this one I felt that I had to reference it.

In this e-Learning Leadership Blog, Edmond Manning discusses how common e-learning topics would be reviewed as movies.  Even though the article is satirical in nature, it should be read by all current and future instructional designers.  How will your trainings be viewed?  Will it be viewed as same old, same old plot line; or will it be viewed as something cutting edge that encourages the audience to be engulfed by it?  Can social media be part of it?  Or is it just another sit and get training.  Personally, it not only made me think about my works pertaining to instructional design, but also to teaching in general.

Get some popcorn and go rate your design work, hopefully you get 4 stars.

Joe Vilcheck

E-Learning Motivation: How To Keep Learners Engaged

A key issue said to be found in eLearning is the struggle to engage and motivate learners.  John Keller provides the ARCS model of Motivational Design as a useful starting point for the basics of motivational theory in eLearning.  Here is a picture of the model:

arcs-model-of-instructional-design_508aeee811f25 (1)

Attention, relevance, confidence, and satisfaction are the four elements Keller suggests that need to be applied to eLearning.  Attracting learners’ attention by doing something out of the ordinarygive examples of the learning’s relevance or even by recognizing individuals who have already used the learning for their own betterment, map out the learning journey the learners are about to set out on, give guidance on how much work will be involved and directly link this to potential success, and last but not least, develop a meaningful rewards system for your learners.

How would you motivate your learners? 

Click here to see tips offered by the eLearning Industry.

Haley Kramer