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Adaptive Learning: Will we reach its potential in 2015?

(Guest post by James J. Goldsmith, Learning Architect/ Business Advisor at Accenture – Chicago, IL)

The Year 2015 will bring many new opportunities for learning specialists to contribute to their profession. But, given such market forces as the convergence of new technologies, advances in neurobiology, changing learner demographics, and escalating client expectation (to name a few), it will also provide a number of new challenges.

Drilling down a bit, several specific challenges come to mind, including the appropriate use of:  collaborative work environments, serious games and gamification, Personal Learning Networks (PLNs), Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) systems, mLearning application, BYOD integration, MOOCs, VUCA, etc. They are all interesting topics (and, doubtless, there will be many articles and blogs devoted to them), but I would like to focus on one area that I think is particularly challenging and one that also offers great rewards if its challenges can be met: Adaptive Learning.

Adaptive Learning seeks to achieve the same level of flexibility and real-time support found in the relationship between an engaged learner and an active learning mentor. In Adaptive Learning, the learner can dynamically adjust the form and/or content of the instruction to personalize the learning experience. Importantly, the learner can tailor the event to focus on unique learning needs and, also, the learner’s questions are addressed specifically and in real-time.  While often associated with computer-based instruction, Adaptive Learning can be applied more broadly to any learning delivery format but, unfortunately, not without difficulty.

Among its benefits, Adaptive Learning can (when integrated successfully into a learning event):

  • Increase learner motivation and engagement
  • Decrease learner time to mastery
  • Decrease the time (and, therefore, the cost) needed to run a learning event
  • Reduce the time learning mentors  need to spend on routine, repeated issues (giving them more time to work on important things)
  • Make effective learning truly scalable at a reasonable cost

Adaptive learning is not a new idea (with initial attempts starting in the 1970’s), but achieving its goals has been elusive. Let’s examine why…

As mentioned, it can be said that Adaptive Learning seeks to emulate the virtues of a successful mentor/learner relationship. Though labor-intensive and expensive (sometimes extremely so), when done well, the mentor/learner model has several advantages, including:

  • The learning approach is holistic, involving cognitive, social and emotional elements. Under the right circumstances, the relationship between the mentor and learner provides the structure, resources and motivation to accelerate high-quality learning.  This relationship is a key (if not THE key) component in this learning model.
  • The mentor is able to continually respond to the learner’s needs, adjusting the learning approach and/or content shared to the right level. Of course, the learner is also an active participant in this process and can request or make adjustments, as needed.
  • Elaborating on the point above, the mentor can draw on an unlimited number of examples (often using a story format) to make points in context that will help the learner achieve targeted learning goals quickly and efficiently.
  • Further elaborating, the learner can ask questions about anything at any time, and can expect to get helpful, real-time responses.

Because the direction that human communication can take is infinite and unpredictable, this is a very complex model – one not easy duplicated when the live mentor / learner relationship is removed or modified. When compared against this model, computer-based learning/eLearning has been most successful in addressing learners’ cognitive needs but has been less successful in addressing their social and emotional needs. Though attempts have been made to:

1) anticipate different responses through branching and

2) provide a human presence using a recorded on-line coach, etc., the results sometimes are too basic or too artificial to be effective and, ultimately, disappoint. Also, computers today continue to perform faster and faster but their application in a learning context is restricted. Anyone who has flummoxed Siri with a question easily answered by a five year-old would probably agree that there is room for improvement. Having said this, advances in “cognitive scaffolding” (i.e., a system’s ability to assess cognitive status and adjust to address gaps rather than areas already mastered) show great promise and merit further study.

So, how can we, in 2015, address our current challenge to maximize the potential of Adaptive Learning? There are many possible actions but I’d like to offer one short-term and one long-term suggestion:

  • Short Term: Blended Learning. As is true for many learning design problem, a viable approach could be the synergistic blending of a variety of learning design and delivery approaches. For example, on a project that I recently completed, we chose to cover the program’s general awareness-type material using an online self-study format.  This approach enabled us to develop (and ensure) the realization of basic core competencies for all participants. It also helped us to prepare them for meaningful participation in the program’s more advanced studies.  For these studies (case-based requiring critical thinking), we provided opportunities (both live and virtual) for real-time dialog between the participants and the course facilitators, as well as peer-to-peer discussions.  While not as seamless or dynamic as a comparable live mentor/learner model (which offers continuous opportunities for dialog in real time), this approach did provide opportunities for meaningful discussions with experts and, combined with the self-study segment, was a cost-effective solution.
  • Long Term: Employ a computer system that is both smart AND compassionate (a combination of HAL-9000 and Wall-E, as it were).   Of course, the goal is to develop an intelligent system that closely mimics the dynamic relationship of a live mentor/learner and which provides balanced support for the cognitive, social and emotional needs of the learner.  In addition, this system needs to be safe, affordable and reliable.  Achieving this in 2015 is, well, a stretch goal.

Currently, segments of the learning industry have embraced achieving Adaptive Learning as a worthwhile goal.  Academic studies continue and several vendor products designed to contribute to Adaptive Learning outcomes are currently available. Examples include Carnegie Learning’s Cognitive Tutor, Desire2Learn’s Knowillage LeaP, Sherston Software’s PlanetSherston, and 30 or so more.  Likely, they will be joined by competing products as the underlying technologies improve and more business opportunities emerge. Though these products are promising, for now a well-conceived blended solution that includes live mentors as well as online adaptive learning systems may continue to be the most prudent path for many learning challenges.

Source: America Learning Media (http://www.americalearningmedia.net/edicion-007/293-analysis/4024-adaptive-learning-will-we-reach-its-potential-in-2015)

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10 razones para desarrollar proyectos de e-learning en HTML5

Movilidad, ubicuidad y portabilidad en el acceso al conocimiento, es una demanda en crecimiento exigida por un mercado que busca garantizar la disponibilidad de la capacitación en el lugar que se encuentre la persona y en el momento que ésta la requiera, aprovechando la potencialidad que ofrecen los dispositivos móviles.

por Alfredo Leone, CEO de QuickLessons

La tendencia hacia el aprendizaje multi-dispositivo se consolida día tras día, impulsando en paralelo el diseño responsivo, que asegure la adaptabilidad de los contenidos para formación online a los diferentes dispositivos existentes, adecuándose a los hábitos actuales de consumo de formación. La premisa hoy es seguir a la persona y no al puesto de trabajo.

En este contexto, la capacidad para crear cursos en HTML5, es una de las características centrales que deberán ofrecer las plataformas y herramientas de autoría que tengan intenciones de liderar en la industria del e-learning.

Contar con una plataforma de autoría HTML5 que resuelvan rápidamente necesidades e incluyan, por ejemplo, editores de simulaciones y juegos, está comenzando a considerarse un requisito imprescindible para desarrollar proyectos de formación, principalmente corporativos.

Veamos algunas razones por las que resulta crítico adoptar HTML5 en los proyectos de e-learning:

1. Garantiza la adaptabilidad de los contenidos a cualquier dispositivo.

2. Se adecua a los hábitos actuales de consumo de información y capacitación.

3. Ofrece respuesta a las crecientes necesidades de formación móvil y portable derivada de la tendencia BYOD (traer el propio dispositivo al ámbito laboral, facilitando el desarrollo del propio proceso de conocimiento).

4. Las organizaciones ya lo están solicitando como un requisito esencial para la implementación de plataformas tecnológicas y al momento de contratación de servicios  de desarrollos de contenidos.

5. El HTML5 es un lenguaje simple, que ha significado un factor decisivo en la optimización de la producción de contenidos/recursos/cursos destinados a soportar procesos de formación corporativa ubicuos, móviles y portables (desde multi-dispositivos)

6. Evita la duplicación y multiplicación de esfuerzos (una única instancia de diseño y desarrollo para generar contenidos multidispositivos),

7. Potencia el manejo de grandes volúmenes de datos

8. Disminuye el tiempo de carga de las páginas web

9. Mejora el SEO

10. Permite la inclusión de mayores elementos gráficos y multimedia, la geolocalización, y posee capacidad de trabajo offline.

La adopción de HTML5 ya es una tendencia a nivel internacional y las empresas líderes están dando fuertes señales al mercado. Por ejemplo, en enero de 2015 YouTube anunció que abandonaba Flash para comenzar a emplear HTML5. Acompañando esta medida, Google impulsa la iniciativa HTML5Rocks.com, un portal que ofrece artículos y tutoriales sobre la nueva versión del lenguaje de programación base de la Web. Mientras que Apple anunció que no soportará más flash en sus iPhone e iPad, inclinándose también por el HTML5. Por su parte, Facebook lanzó su Centro de Recursos HTML5 Resource Center. Y la lista continúa: desde 2013 SAP apuesta por el HTML5 y el código abierto para su plataforma de aplicaciones móviles, y Microsft también impulsa el HTML5.

Las mediciones mencionadas por el Consorcio World Wide Web (W3C) en su artículo ‘La Recomendación de HTML5, un hito para la Plataforma Web Abierta’, reflejan claramente la tendencia. Una encuesta de Vision Mobile (2014) reveló que el 42% de los 10.000 desarrolladores que fueron consultados utilizan la combinación de HTML, CSS y JavaScript para la totalidad o parte de sus aplicaciones móviles. Al tiempo que Gartner identificó al HTML5 como una de las 10 principales tecnologías móviles para 2015 y 2016, afirmando que el HTML5 “será una tecnología esencial para las organizaciones que desarrollan aplicaciones a través de múltiples plataformas”.

Sin duda, y frente a la creciente evidencia de mercado, es tiempo de analizar las 10 razones por las que resulta crítico adoptar HTML5 en los proyectos de e-learning.

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QuickLessons is happy to announce a partnership with BranchTrack, our best date for Valentine’s Day :)

What’s BranchTrack?

BranchTrack improves online learning by adding realistic customer simulations into the mix. When learners face an actual customer and have to make actual decisions, they tend to care more, remember more and apply their knowledge in their jobs faster. When used in e.g. customer service training, better results directly translate into increased revenue and higher customer satisfaction.

BranchTrack also offers insight into learner behavior within the simulations, uncovers their choices and mistakes. This data can be used to improve work processes, identify skill gaps and prioritise training efforts. It is by far the most cost-efficient way to understand e.g. what all your employees in fact do wrong when they talk to a customer.

Creating complex branching scenarios in BranchTrack is as easy as using post-its or drawing on a whiteboard. Design takes seconds and finished projects can be shared, embedded into courses or downloaded as SCORM packages.

What’s QuickLessons?

QuickLessons is an online authoring platform for creating engaging and effective e-learning courses. It offers templates, interactive games, exercises and a vast library of characters for quick and simple course development. It also allows PPT to Flash/HTML5 conversion and empowers collaboration through shared assets library and course review. In other words, if you have content that you want to push to learners quickly, use QuickLessons (hence the name).

What’s the partnership about?

BranchTrack editor is now available from within QuickLessons. At a simple push of a button, BranchTrack editor pops up, where authors can choose an existing simulation or create a new one, without having to leave QuickLessons platform or remember their BranchTrack password. Building hands-on, effective e-learning has just become even simple. Or quicker, if you aren’t tired of my puns yet.

Contact us from our contact form: www.quicklessons.com/ and know more!

One last thing. QuickLessons and its parent company Izzui come from Brazil and have presence in many Latin American countries, which means you will have support in English, Portuguese and Spanish.

 

Stay informed on QuickLessons social platforms:

Stay informed on BranchTrack social platforms:

 

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QuickLessons y BranchTrack: alianza para el desarrollo de contenidos de e-learning con mayor rapidez

QuickLessons, la plataforma colaborativa para la creación de cursos online atractivos y eficaces, y BranchTrack, una nueva herramienta online para la creación de simulaciones interactivas; anunciaron una alianza global con el objetivo de prestar un mejor servicio a sus clientes.

“QuickLessons ofrecerá el editor de simulaciones BranchTrack como parte de nuestra plataforma de desarrollo de contenidos de e-learning. En consecuencia, la herramienta de construcción de escenarios simulados de BranchTrack, estará disponible para los clientes de QuickLessons, sin complicaciones y de una manera perfectamente integrada. La construcción de excelentes cursos prácticos en habilidades de ventas, atención al cliente, telemarketing y muchas otras áreas, será mucho más rápida con QuickLessons”, señaló Alfredo LeoneCEO de QuickLessons, empresa matriz de Izzui.

Por su parte, Sergey SnegirevCEO de BranchTrack, sostuvo: “Vamos a proporcionar la tecnología, el apoyo y los conocimientos técnicos necesarios en relación a nuestro editor de simulaciones; y también introduciremos QuickLessons a nuestra base de clientes”.

“Sentimos que QuickLessons tiene un gran potencial y una presencia establecida en Brasil, por lo que la alianza es comercialmente justificable para nosotros. Además, la tecnología de QuickLessons y su equipo hacen que nuestra primera integración sea fácil de lograr. Me emocioné al ver cómo el equipo QuickLessons realizó un rápido avance hacia nuestra integración”, agregó el CEO de BranchTrack, una compañía con sede en Letonia.

“Esperamos atraer nuevos clientes y establecer a ambas compañías como una solución conjunta superior, en los mercados actualmente cubiertos por ambas empresas. Así, BranchTrack ayudará a los desarrolladores de e-learning a ahorrar tiempo en forma significativa para la construcción de simulaciones interactivas, basándose en una plataforma de autoría como QuickLessons, para la entrega de piezas lineales tradicionales de un curso. Nuestra plataforma online para la creación y gestión de contenidos de e-learning hace que sea fácil crear un único y buen flujo de trabajo, tanto para la creación de contenidos en línea, como para el desarrollo de simulaciones”, concluyó Leone.

QuickLessons y BranchTrack promoverán nuevas sinergias entre ambas compañías, con una mayor integración de productos próximos a lanzarse.

En conjunto, ambas compañías tienen como objetivo ofrecer soluciones para convertir a los expertos de diversas materias, en diseñadores e-learning.

Infórmese a través de las plataformas sociales de QuickLessons:

Infórmese a través de las plataformas sociales de BranchTrack:

 

 

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QuickLessons and BranchTrack partner to bring rapid scenario building to eLearning content development

QuickLessons the Collaborative Platform for creating engaging and effective online courses, and BranchTrack a new online tool for creating interactive simulations, announced a global alliance to better serve their customers.

Alfredo Leone, CEO of QuickLessons parent company Izzui said: “QuickLessons will offer BranchTrack simulations editor as part of our e-learning development platform. As a result, the BranchTrack branching scenarios builder will be available to QuickLessons customers in a hassle-free and seamlessly integrated manner. Building great, hands-on courses on sales skills, customer care, telemarketing and many other areas in QuickLessons will become much faster”

Sergey Snegirev, BranchTrack CEO said: “We will provide the technology, support and know-how as well as introduce QuickLessons to our existing customer base”.

“We felt that QuickLessons has great potential and wanted to get in on the ground floor. QuickLessons has an established presence in Brazil, so it is commercially justifiable for us. Also, its technology and the team behind it make our first integration easy to achieve. I was really excited to see how QuickLessons team were making rapid progress towards our integration”, continued the Latvia based CEO of BranchTrack.

“We expect to attract new customers and establish both companies as a top-of-mind joint solution in the markets served by both. BranchTrack helps e-learning developers save a lot of time while building great interactive simulations but it still relies on an authoring platform to deliver the traditional linear parts of a course. Our comprehensive online platform for eLearning content creation and management makes it easy to create a single, smooth workflow for both online content authoring and BranchTrack simulation development”, concluded the CEO of Izzui.

Both companies look to further leverage synergies between QuickLessons and BranchTrack with more product integration releases about to come.

Collectively, both companies aim to deliver solutions to turn subject matter experts into e-Learning designers, and experienced designers into learning engagement rockstars.

 

Stay informed on QuickLessons social platforms:

Stay informed on BranchTrack social platforms:

 

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¿Cómo acelerar la producción de un curso de e-learning?

Actualmente las empresas necesitan tener agilidad en la creación y edición de material didáctico para sus procesos de formación corporativa, y la opción de contratar recursos externos resulta muy costosa, además de consumir tiempo.

por Renata SouzaQuickLessons Evangelist

El proceso de validar y realizar cambios a los cursos suele llevar demasiado tiempo, cuando la velocidad es fundamental.

¿Cómo puede colaborar la plataforma de autoría QuickLessons a resolver esta necesidad?:

  • Utilizando objetos de aprendizaje: acelerando la producción de cursos mediante la reutilización de contenido. Incluso se puede agrupar los contenidos para crear un nuevo curso. Los objetos de aprendizaje hacen que la edición sea mucho más fácil, y cuando se cambia el objeto original, estos cambios se aplicarán a todos los cursos en los que el objeto modificado aparece.
  • Duplicando contenidos: con QuickLessons es posible duplicar cursos, objetos, escenas, ejercicios y otros recursos; en lugar de recrearlos. La herramienta también permite hacer los cambios que se requieran en la nueva copia.
  • Cambiando el tamaño y recortando imágenes dentro de la plataforma: QuickLessons ha construido una funcionalidad que permite cambiar el tamaño de las imágenes y recortarlas para que se adecuen a las dimensiones recomendadas en cada plantilla. De esta manera, las imágenes no necesitan ser trabajadas para su adecuación de antemano.

Y cuando se trata de editar cursos, todo el contenido está disponible 100% online, pudiendo realizarse cambios desde cualquier lugar. Lo único que se tiene que hacer es exportar el curso nuevamente y estará listo para ser entregado a sus usuarios.

Para probar QuickLessons sin costo: www.quicklessons.com

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QuickBites: how to speed up course production?

by Renata Souza, QuickLessons Evangelist

Today companies need agility in creating and editing training material. Contracting external resources is very expensive and time consuming.

The process of validating and making changes to courses takes too long when speed is fundamental.

How can QuickLessons help?

  • Using learning objects: learning objects expedite courses production by reusing content. You can even group them to create a new course. Learning objects make editing a lot easier. When you change the original object, changes can apply to all or selected courses in which the object appears in.
  • Duplicating content: with QuickLessons it is possible to duplicate courses, objects, scenes, exercises and more. You can duplicate rather than recreate and make the changes you need in the new copy.
  • Resizing and cropping images inside the platform: QuickLessons has a built in tool that allows images to be resized and cropped to the dimensions recommended in each template. This way images don’t need to be treated beforehand.

And when it comes to editing courses, all the content is available 100% online. You can make changes from anywhere. All you have to do is export again and it is ready to be delivered to the users.

Test QuickLessons today at no cost: www.quicklessons.com

 

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¿Cómo reutilizar contenidos de e-learning?

Las empresas han invertido e invierten importantes recursos para desarrollar contenidos digitales en todo tipo de formatos, que -a menudo- se dispersan a través de múltiples plataformas y canales.

por Renata Souza - QuickLessons Evangelist 

¡Es esencial reutilizar y reciclar el contenido!

En el e-learning es fundamental poder empaquetar el contenido en una experiencia de aprendizaje útil y no sólo facilitar el acceso al material.

¿Cómo lograr este objetivo?

¡De un modo muy simple! QuickLessons puede ayudar a las empresas y organizaciones a reutilizar su contenido digital existente, a partir de las funcionalidades y beneficios que ofrece como herramienta de autoría:

  • PowerPoint: permite convertir cada diapositiva de una presentación en una escena de un curso y mezclarlas con las escenas que provee QuickLessons, como así también con las evaluaciones, concursos y muchos otros recursos que aporta la herramienta.
  • Vídeos: además de subir videos, QuickLessons también permite añadir los enlaces a vídeos que la empresa ya tenga disponibles en YouTube o Vimeo, lo que hará  a los cursos más ligeros y rápidos de cargar.
  • Archivos adjuntos: es posible adjuntar cualquier tipo de archivo a los cursos y añadir enlaces, y que el alumno los abra o accede ellos exactamente cuando usted quiere que esto ocurra.
  • Paquetes de HTML5: los paquetes de HTML5 permiten insertar un gran número de diferentes contenidos. ¡El cielo es el límite!

Es muy importante reutilizar los contenidos que ya tenga desarrollados la organización, para la creación de cursos de e-learning, ya que insume mucho tiempo y valiosos recursos, volver a crear el material desde cero, cada vez que se lo necesita tener disponible.

Para probar QuickLessons sin costo: www.quicklessons.com

 

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How to repurpose content for e-learning?

by Renata Souza, QuickLessons Evangelist

Companies have invested significant resources to develop digital content in all kind of formats. This content is often dispersed across multiple platforms and channels.

It is essential to reuse and recycle content!

For e-learning, it is critical to be able to package the content into a useful learning experience and not just provide access to it.

How to do this?

Simple! QuickLessons can help companies repurpose their existing digital content:

  • PowerPoint: convert each slide of the presentation to a course scene and mix them with QuickLessons scenes, evaluations, quizzes and more.
  • Videos: In addition to uploading videos you can just add the links to the videos you already have in YouTube or Vimeo, and that will make your course lighter and faster to load.
  • Attachments: It is possible to attach any kind of file to courses and add links so the learner will open them exactly when you want them to.
  • HTML5 packages: Adding HTML5 packages makes it possible to insert a great number of different contents. Sky is the limit!

It is very important to reuse your content when creating e-learning courses because it is very time consuming to recreate material from scratch each time you need to make the content available.

Test QuickLessons today at no cost: www.quicklessons.com

 

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O QuickLessons amplia a oferta aos clientes como parte do compromisso com a tecnologia HTML5

Como parte de seu compromisso contínuo com a HTML5 como linguagem preferencial para a criação de conteúdo, o QuickLessons anunciou o lançamento de um conjunto de atualizações, melhorias e novos recursos para HTML5 incorporados em sua plataforma colaborativa on-line para o desenvolvimento de conteúdos para e-learning.

O CEO do QuickLessons, Alfredo Leone, disse que “a criação de cursos em HTML5, sem qualquer conhecimento de programação, é uma característica fundamental da nossa plataforma. Utilizando a tecnologia HTML5, os cursos criados no QuickLessons são responsivos e acessíveis a partir de qualquer dispositivo móvel.”.

O QuickLessons já oferece a possibilidade de converter material em PowerPoint para HTML5. Os clientes de qualquer plano corporativo do QuickLessons também podem adicionar pacotes HTML5 existentes em qualquer curso criado com essa tecnologia.

Entre os vários novos recursos em HTML5, o QuickLessons também inclui:

  • Mais de 200 personagens em parceria com a empresa e-Learning Brothers, líder no fornecimento de templates para e-learning e de design virtual customizado para treinamentos.
  • Mais de 20 jogos e exercícios também fornecidos pela e-Learning Brothers.
  • Capacidade de adicionar links para vídeos do YouTube e do Vimeo dentro dos cursos.

O QuickLessons é usado atualmente para a criação de cursos em HTML5 por organizações como a GOL, Electrolux, Natura, Lojas Americanas, Hospital Albert Einstein, Atento, SKY e Universidade Positivo.

O QuickLessons utiliza bibliotecas de conteúdo, com templates prontos para o uso que ajudam o cliente a desenvolver, de forma rápida e fácil, cursos que são tão envolventes quanto eficazes. A plataforma oferece jogos e exercícios interativos, mais de 200 personagens e mais de 10.000 poses diferentes. O QuickLessons também permite converter apresentações em PPT para Flash ou HTML5, tem opções de revisão colaborativa, diversos modos de exportação (off-line, on-line, incluindo suporte para SCORM e AICC) e um repositório digital para gerenciar arquivos multimídia, objetos de aprendizagem e cursos.

“O QuickLessons tem um histórico comprovado de reduzir o tempo médio de produção de cursos on-line em 40% e o custo médio de produção em 60%”, concluiu Alfredo Leone.

 

Para mais informações:

Web: http://www.quicklessons.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/quicklessons

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/QuickLessons

 

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QuickLessons enhances offering to clients as part of commitment to HTML5

As part their ongoing commitment to HTML5 as preferred platform for content creation, QuickLessons announced the release of a joint set of HTML5 updates, improvements and new features incorporated into its online collaborative solution for elearning content development.

Alfredo LeoneQuickLessons CEO said: “creating HTML5 courses without any programming skills is one key feature of our platform. Using HTML5, responsive and accessible QuickLessons courses can be delivered via any type of device”.

QuickLessons already offers the possibility of converting PowerPoint material to HTML5. Buyers of any QuickLessons corporate plan can also add existing HTML5 packages to any course.

Among the various new HTML5 features QuickLessons also includes:

  • More than 200 characters from e-Learning Brothers, the leading provider of e-learning templates and virtual design customized training.
  • More than 20 games and exercises also provided by e-Learning Brothers.
  • Ability to add YouTube and Vimeo links in the courses.

QuickLessons is currently used to create engaging HTML5 courses by organizations like the GOL, Electrolux, Natura, Lojas Americanas, Albert Einstein Hospital, Atento, SKY and Universidade Positivo.

QuickLessons uses content libraries including ready to use templates to help client develop easily and quickly courses that are both engaging and effective. The platform offers interactive games and exercises and more than 200 characters in over 10,000 different poses. QuickLessons also allows to convert PPT presentations to Flash or HTML5, and has options for collaborative review, multiple export options (offline, online, including support for SCORM and AICC) and a digital repository to manage multimedia files, learning objects and courses.

“QuickLessons has a proven record of reducing average online course production time by 40% and average online course productions costs by 60%” concluded Alfredo Leone.

 

For more information: http://www.quicklessons.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/quicklessons

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/QuickLessons

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QuickLessons reafirma su apoyo a HTML5, mejorando su propuesta a los clientes que utilizan su plataforma de creación de cursos online

Confirmando su apoyo al lenguaje HTML5, QuickLessons dio a conocer las actualizaciones, mejorías y nuevas funcionalidades, que incorporó a su plataforma colaborativa 100% en línea para la creación rápida y sencilla de cursos interactivos y con gran impacto visual.

La capacidad para la creación de cursos en HTML5, es una de las características centrales de ésta herramienta de autoría, que no requiere conocimientos de programación o diseño para gestionarla.

“A partir de su capacidad para crear cursos en HTML5, QuickLessons permite que los contenidos sean accesibles desde cualquier dispositivo, para adaptarse a los hábitos actuales de consumo de formación, siguiendo a la persona y no al puesto de trabajo”, señaló Alfredo Leone, CEO de QuickLessons (www.quicklessons.com).

La plataforma Quicklessons ofrece la posibilidad de convertir PowerPoint a HTML5, manteniendo todas las características del contenido y potenciándolo con los beneficios de HTML5. Asimismo, agregar paquetes de HTML5 en un curso.

“HTML5 es un lenguaje más simple (disminuye el tiempo de carga de las páginas web) y más semántico (mejora el SEO), que incluye más elementos gráficos y multimedia, la geolocalización y el uso de las webs offline”, destacó Leone.

Entre las nuevas funcionalidades que propone QuickLessons también se destacan:

  • Incorporación de más de 200 personajes a partir de una alianza con e-Learning Brothers, el proveedor líder de plantillas de e-learning y diseño de formación virtual a medida.
  • Incorporación de más de 20 juegos y ejercicios, también provistos por e-Learning Brothers, en el marco de su partnership con QuickLessons.
  • Posibilidad de añadir enlaces de Youtube y Vimeo en los cursos.

De esta manera, QuickLessons incrementa las potencialidades que brinda su herramienta de autoría, que ya es utilizada con éxito por organizaciones como la línea área GOL, Electrolux, Natura, Lojas Americanas, Hospital Albert Einstein, Atento, SKY y Universidade Positivo, entre otras.

QuickLessons utiliza el concepto de bibliotecas que incluyen plantillas listas para usar, haciendo muy fácil su utilización para desarrollar cursos de gran impacto visual. La plataforma también ofrece juegos interactivos y ejercicios, múltiples bibliotecas de plantillas animadas, más de 200 personajes en más de 10.000 poses diferentes. Además, permite convertir presentaciones PPT a Flash o HTML5, y cuenta con opciones de revisión colaborativas para usuarios y expertos, opciones múltiples de exportación (off line, online, incluyendo la compatibilidad con SCORM y AICC) y un repositorio digital para gestionar archivos multimedia, objetos de aprendizaje y cursos.

“Los clientes de QuickLessons reducen en un promedio del 40% el tiempo empleado en la creación de cursos online y disminuyen en promedio un 60% el coste de producción”, subrayó Alfredo Leone.

Para obtener mayor información:

Web: http://www.quicklessons.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/quicklessons

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/QuickLessons

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eLearning partnership spreads knowledge and awareness to prevent Ebola

(LINGOs, October 2014) The learning community is partnering with individuals and organizations to increase knowledge and awareness of the outbreak of Ebola and to prevent the spread of this virus. Using content from the World Health Organization, CDC, and other organizations, the DisasterReady.org team created a 15-minute online course called Ebola Awareness Quick Guide in both English and French and made it available on the DisasterReady.org portal free of charge for any registered learner.  Registration takes only one minute to complete and provides immediate access to over 300+ online courses, recorded webinars, videos, and other resources.

Upon learning of the Ebola Awareness Quick Guide, LINGOs requested to put the course on its own platform so that its 80+ International NGO members could provide it to their staff via the same site as their other organizational learning, and track staff access of this resource.

“We are very happy to share these two courses with LINGOs” said Bob Nutting, Director of Learning at DisasterReady.org.

“LINGOs Member Organizations (http://membership.lingoslastmilelearning.org/lingos-members) have responded like never before to the availability of a new course,” said LINGOs Membership Director Marian Abernathy. “The timely creation of the course and sharing it with LINGOs for international NGO Member organizations to deploy and track to their global staff is an important step to preventing the spread of Ebola.”

International NGOs are deploying the English and French versions of the Ebola Awareness course for staff in affected areas and their emergency response teams. LINGOs and its member organizations are grateful to DisasterReady.org and its parent organization the Cornerstone OnDemand Foundation for providing some of the indispensable elements – information and knowledge – to stopping the spread of Ebola.

The quick guide course includes links to updated websites with the latest information on the outbreak. Learners will also have immediate access to documents providing additional awareness of the outbreak including fact sheets, posters, and information specific to aid workers in Africa.

The course is available to anyone free of charge via http://DisasterReady.org. Additionally, international development and humanitarian workers who work for a LINGOs Member Organization, may access the course through their organizational learning platforms.

 

Source: LINGOs Blog (http://lingos.wordpress.com)

 

DisasterReady (www.DisasterReady.org) is a free online resource for aid workers with over 30,000 registered users from around the world. Through the DisasterReady.org initiative, aid workers can share resources and information and access customized online learning anytime, anywhere in the world. By providing high-quality, accessible training at no cost, the DisasterReady.org Portal allows aid workers to do what they do best: save lives, rebuild communities, and restore hope.

LINGOs (www.LINGOs.org) is a not-for-profit capacity building organization in its tenth year of providing world-class learning opportunities that are appropriate, accessible and affordable for people working to reduce poverty and alleviate suffering in the developing world.

 

Las marcas mejoran la relación con sus clientes incorporando juegos y aprendizaje a través de Izzui Channels

Eudora, Glenfiddich y Vivo son tres ejemplos puntuales que muestran como marcas líderes pueden mejorar los niveles de engagement con sus actuales y potenciales clientes, a través de contenidos audiovisuales y juegos participativos, aprovechando la potencialidad de Izzui Channels.

“Como Content Engagement Platform centrada en el marketing social para marcas con seguidores masivos en redes sociales, Izzui es un canal perfecto para profundizar el brand awareness, fidelizando clientes, generando comunidad, y mejorando la percepción del valor agregado que pueden ofrecer determinados productos o servicios, para mejorar la calidad de vida de las personas. Asimismo, Izzui es un aliado ideal para mejorar la relación de las marcas con sus clientes, y reforzar líneas de negocio puntuales. También es una herramienta efectiva para optimizar el aprendizaje online de grandes números de colaboradores diseminados en diferentes locaciones geográficas, aumentando su sentido de pertenencia con la marca y sus niveles de compromiso”, señalo Alfredo Leone, CEO de Izzui (www.izzui.com).

Según informó el ejecutivo, Izzui es una potente Content Engagement Platform enfocada en el usuario y especialmente concebida para marcas con seguidores masivos en las redes sociales. “La herramienta permite recuperar la relación entre marcas y personas, creando canales de aprendizaje, divertidos e interesantes –inicialmente en el web, en Facebook y dispositivos móviles-, incrementando el conocimiento de marca entre sus clientes, y generando instancias de participación real entre el cliente y la empresa”, agregó.

“La solución proporciona una forma única de crear canales interactivos de comunicación, marketing y aprendizaje, relevantes y atractivos. Nuestro objetivo es combinar marketing, conocimiento y redes sociales, en una experiencia social y digital que conecte en línea a las personas y las marcas, a nivel mundial “, destacó Leone.

“Cualquier marca con presencia en redes sociales está invitada a participar en Izzui Channels”, apuntó Leone, explicando que la plataforma permite a las marcas construir cursos o información útil para sus clientes, importando contenidos de YouTube, Vimeo y Slideshare, o cualquier contenido digital desde PowerPoint hasta HTML5 o FLASH.

En este sentido, el CEO de Izzui resaltó el enorme poder que tiene la utilización de instancias de aprendizaje y propuestas lúdicas en el logro de una mayor participación e interés de los clientes.

Veamos algunas experiencias concretas en el ámbito de la industria cosmética, la producción de whisky y las telecomunicaciones.

Eudora: contenidos de marketing para potenciar su modelo de e-commerce

Eudora es una marca de cosmética del Grupo Boticário, que cuenta en su portfolio con una amplia gama de productos que unen belleza y actitud, combinando calidad, tecnología y sofisticación. La marca brasileña tiene un modelo multicanal con foco en la venta directa. Además de comercializar sus productos en tiendas propias, posee un canal de comercio electrónico en expansión y  crecimiento.

Como parte de sus esfuerzos de marketing, la empresa cuenta con docenas de videos que enseñan a utilizar sus productos. Además, posee importantes alianzas con bloggers del mundo de la moda, que refuerzan su presencia de marca en redes sociales.

En el marco de esta estrategia y para reforzar su modelo de comercialización online, Eudora decidió implementar enIzzui – Content Engagement Platform, un canal social de intercambio, conocimiento, juegos, respuestas e información útil de la marca, centrado en los clientes y potenciales clientes que compran o podrían adquirir sus productos en Internet.

El canal que Eudora tiene desplegado en Izzui (http://channel.izzui.com/eudora/), ya cuenta con 15 cursos en los que sus usuarios pueden ganar puntos, subir niveles, y recibir trofeos, en la medida en que vayan completando los cursos. Finalmente, los logros obtenidos por los usuarios se convierten en descuentos de hasta un 30% en las compras realizadas en el portal de comercio electrónico de la marca, generando un beneficio real de compra para sus clientes.

Glenfiddich: profundizar el conocimiento de marca

El whisky Glenfiddich, producido por la marca tradicional escocesa William Grant & Sons, es el más premiado Single Malt del mundo. La reconocida destilería de tradición familiar fue fundada por William Grant en 1887, y desde entonces y hasta el día de hoy produce el whisky escocés de malta más galardonado del mundo.

En el marco de su estrategia de marketing internacional, y con el objetivo de reforzar el conocimiento de marca y profundizar la relación con sus clientes y potenciales clientes, Glenfiddich implementó en Izzui – Content Engagement Platform, un canal social de intercambio, conocimiento, juegos, respuestas e información útil sobre la marca, para mejorar su brand awareness entre los consumidores.

El Canal Glenfiddich (http://channel.izzui.com/Glenfiddich) desarrollado en Izzui Channels ya tiene más de 30 vídeos con desafíos que animan a sus usuarios, a competir, mientras aprenden.

El espacio ha sido completamente personalizado con diferentes niveles y premios, referidos a conocimientos vinculados al ámbito del whisky en general, y a esta marca en particular.

Los logros obtenidos a través del Canal Glenfiddich, se pueden convertir en premios y en participaciones en eventos exclusivos promovidos por la marca.

Vivo: capacitar su fuerza de ventas para incrementar su compromiso

La capacitación de la fuerza de ventas de una empresa es crucial para mejorar y mantener los niveles de satisfacción de sus clientes, como así también optimizar sus resultados de negocio. Así lo entiende Vivo, el mayor operador de telecomunicaciones móviles de Brasil, que impulsó un innovador proyecto de e-learning focalizado no solamente en la trasmisión de conocimientos sino también en la fidelización de sus colaboradores externos.

La compañía que forma parte del Grupo Telefónica y provee servicios de telecomunicaciones móviles, transmisión de datos por teléfono celular e internet móvil (a través de sus filiales en el mercado brasileño); posee un equipo comercial integrado por promotores que no revisten el carácter de empleados, a quienes necesita capacitarlos, incrementando al mismo tiempo su compromiso y sentido de pertenencia con la marca. Un requerimiento que se traduce en un reto de magnitud para lograr procesos de formación y pertenencia efectivos.

Frente a esta necesidad y en el marco de su estrategia general de formación corporativa, Vivo implementó Izzui – Content Engagement Platform, un entorno social de aprendizaje, intercambio, juegos, respuestas e información útil sobre la marca. El objetivo es acercar y reforzar el conocimiento técnico de sus promotores, consolidando al mismo tiempo el compromiso de estas personas con la marca.

Actualmente, en el canal privado que Vivo tiene desplegado en la plataforma Izzui, fueron creados cursos relacionados con más de 10 temáticas diferentes, que abarcan diversos tópicos que van desde tecnologías móviles a técnicas de venta.

“A través de esta iniciativa, Vivo busca mejorar los conocimientos técnicos de sus promotores y aumentar aún más su compromiso por promover una capacitación más divertida, dinámica e interactiva”, informó Alfredo Leone, CEO de Izzui, destacando las características innovadoras de una solución pensada para ofrecer resultados concretos, operando como entorno ideal para el desarrollo de procesos de capacitación significativos y orientados a objetivos de negocio.

 

Keys to the successful design of a corporate training process

Interview with James Goldsmith, Learning Architect/ Business Advisor at Accenture (Chicago, IL).

James has worked at Accenture for 17 years and is currently a Learning Architect and Business Advisor working out of the St. Charles, IL office. Prior to that, he was a Capability Development Team Lead for the Talent Development group and Development Manager for Accenture Learning’s Content Development Center. He has more than 25 years experience in training design, development and deployment as well as program and project management. His interests are to develop strategic approaches to address business capability opportunities and then to lead teams to successfully implement these opportunities.

 

What are the 10 most important points to consider in the training process that you can highlight after 25 years of experience in training design, development, deployment, and project management?

James J. Goldsmith: It is difficult to limit this answer to just ten points, but here are some ideas that come to mind:

1. Business goals drive learning goals. The learning event is not an end in itself but is a means to an end. It will only be successful if there is a change in performance that leads to the participant successfully achieving the business goal. (As an aside: I’m a corporate developer and I realize that things might be a little different in academia.

2. Get the best possible people for your project team. Spend time on this because having the right team makes all the difference! You want people who are talented, creative, easy to work with and experienced (and what they lack in experience they should more than make up for in good instincts). They should be intelligent, insightful, hard-working, highly invested and have high-quality standards. They should be self-starters, can-doer’s and people who are naturally uneasy if they aren’t adding value.  Find these people and, with their help, you can do anything

3. At least from my perspective, working with subject matter experts (SMEs) is typically the most challenging part of any development project. The reasons why could include:

  • SMEs don’t understand/value what you as an ID bring to the projec
  • Their work on your project is part-time and it is a second (or third, or fourth) priority to their real job
  • They think that all the content they provide is of equal value and should be included in the deliverable, despite its impact to scope
  • They underestimate the amount of work and/or overestimate their ability to complete the wor
  • They are locked into 20th Century learning models and are not interested in using anything but “tried-and-true” techniques from the past

To mitigate these risks:

  • When the project is just beginning, spend time with the sponsor to make sure that the right SMEs are assigned to the project
  • Make sure the SMEs have adequate time to work on the project (sanctioned by their supervisor) and that the work is included in their annual development plan.  They need to be recoginized and rewarded for their work
  • With the SME’s active participation, develop a detailed development plan covering all phases of the project (and spend time discussing the design approach)
  • Establish frequent and regular opportunities to meet and communicate
  • Become the SME’s best friend (optional)

4. When you first start a project, try to brainstorm with as many design-minded people as you can, even if your project seems simple and straightforward. The last couple of years have clearly shown that we all have much to learn about learning so look for opportunities to include new ideas coming out of learning science and industry research. Also, when brainstorming, your first pass should be focused on developing the best possible solution. Don’t worry about constraints like time, money and resources at first but work towards a solution that will best address the business goal. After that solution has been developed, work with the stakeholders to modify the solution based on the realities of budget, timeline and resources. If stakeholders are actively involved, all compromises will be made with open eyes and, if the process is done correctly, the highest priorities will remain intact and be addressed in your final design.

5. Make a template out of any new design you work on. You may be using it again or may want to share it with colleagues.

6. More times than I like to remember, a project has started with the sponsor telling me what to do before we even had a chance to talk about the overall goals or strategy. The first words out of his or her mouth were something like “I want you to build me a three-day workshop and I need it in two weeks.” There are so many things wrong with this! Instructional design is a profession and IDs are paid to consult, not take orders. As an ID, you’ve spent years, perhaps even decades thinking about and applying learning best practices to increase engagement, retention and capability. Your sponsor, on the other hand, may have been thinking about the project since… that morning?  You need to make it clear at the onset that your role is to guide the learning development process and that your relationship with the sponsor is collaboration among equals.  Of course, you also need adequate time to do a thorough Needs Analysis and then build a thoughtful design proposal, etc.  It may take a little time to build up trust and respect you need with your sponsor but it will come after you have had a chance to show the value that you, as an ID, bring to the project by providing a learning solution that is clearly aligned with the business intent.

7. Related to the above, don’t be afraid to push back when it is clear to you that following through on a sponsor or other stakeholder’s recommendation will lead to poor results. It is your responsibility to clearly and dispassionately explain why an alternate approach is preferred. My experience has been that most stakeholders are reasonable and, if your argument is credible, they will agree with your recommendations. After all, they want the project to succeed as much as you do (and perhaps even more so). However, there is the chance that your explanation will fall on deaf ears. If it does, at the very least you will need to document the situation fully (describing the issue, your alternate approach and why you are recommending it, outcomes from the stakeholder meeting, etc.) to explain your role in the situation. In extreme cases, you may even need to remove yourself from the project.  This has happened to me twice in my career. In both instances, I took little comfort in eventually being right in my assessment of the situation, wishing that there were some way to have found common ground with the stakeholder to avoid the inevitable poor outcome.

8. Go outside traditional ID sources to improve your craft. As an example, I am a (very part-time) professional musician. Over the years, I’ve discovered that there are parallels between writing music and developing learning solutions. In particular, you need to be able to quickly jump back and forth from the details to the “big picture” and be able to keep all of the connections active (and editable) while doing this.  When writing music, a question might be, “Should I use strings and brass together at measures 120 – 128 or just strings alone to create the dramatic effect I need here?” For the developer, a similar question could be, “Should I include a mini-scenario at the end of Module 3 or will a series of multiple choice questions suffice to demonstrate mastery?” In both cases, a clear understanding of the overall strategy is needed to make an informed decision at the detailed level. And, when all of the details are combined together, the result is your strategy incarnate. I use ideas from music to help me in my work as an ID but you may find inspiration from other arts, from the sciences, from nature, from the entertainment industry or from any number of other sources. Keep an open mind and you may be surprised at the number of the great ideas you uncover!

9. Develop a sense of humor or, at a minimum, a sense of perspective. My experience is that the work IDs do is surprisingly complex with the potential for many things to go wrong, especially if you aspire to move the learning discipline forward through your work. At times, you could get discouraged (don’t!) and it may seem that your project will never end (it will!). Basically, if you keep at it, you will eventually prevail. Take the work but not yourself too seriously and don’t forget to reward yourself along the way for small victories. If you are a perfectionist, you will likely face some dark days during the development cycle and may have to let some things go to in the interest of budget and schedule. Also, my personal opinion is that no project is so important that it is ever acceptable to alienate your ID colleagues. Take the long view which is that the project will end, but the relationships will continue.

10. One more point (and one that is easy to forget): Have fun!

 

What are the keys to the successful design of a corporate training process?

Of course, dozens of books written by very experienced, highly competent and knowledgeable people in the learning profession have been written on this topic, and the basics are well documented. A small sample of books I have benefited from include:  The Systematic Design of Instruction by Walter Dick, Lou Carey and James O. Carey; First Principles of Instruction by M. David Merrill; Evidence-Based Training Methods by Ruth Clark; and Design for How People Learn by Julie Dirksen. Of course there are many, many others.

What I would like to do to answer this question is to focus on some of the key developments of what I call “21st Century Learning.” Here are ten trends I have benefited from on recent development project work that, I think, are worth noting:

  1. Big Data (for Learning) – Gleaning the most useful information from Learning Management Systems, etc. to improve learning design, development and delivery. (An enormous amount of data is being generated by LMS’s and similar devices. By identifying the right type of data and then organizing it into useful constructs, we can re-tool our learning products and processes to better meet our learners’ needs.)
  2. Confidence-Based Learning – The application of neuro-biology, cognitive psychology, and game theory to increase participants’ retention of and confidence in their knowledge.
  3. Gamification – The use of game elements and design techniques in non-game contexts to improve engagement and retention.
  4. Immersive Training Simulations – Computer-generated or other environments that mimic real life and enable learning to take place in a risk-free setting.  (Especially useful when life or limb would otherwise be threatened!)
  5. Information Nuggets (reusable content) – The ability to reuse small pieces of information across a wide array of learning assets and for multiple audiences. In brief:  Develop once; apply many times.
  6. Installment Learning – A design and delivery format that can quickly and cheaply provide useful information in a way that can make learning “habit forming.”
  7. Personalized Learning - Highly individualized learning based on a learner’s needs and interests. The learner makes personal choices regarding when, where, what and how learning is achieved.
  8. 21st Century Classroom – A global, interconnected network of collaborative classrooms that incorporate state-of-the-art virtual conferencing and collaborative technologies.
  9. Social Learning – The idea that people learn from each other through interaction, reflection, imitation and modelling (and change as a result).  (More on this in Question 8.)
  10. Video for Learning – The use of inexpensive, low-fidelity video lectures to deliver and build a framework around learning.

 

What are the challenges for the instructional design industry in 2014?

Anyone working in this field knows that the pace of change is great. It is difficult to keep up with all of the advances in technology, neurobiology and the many other areas that impact the work we do as instructional designers. The recent research in brain and learning has been particularly valuable, poking holes in commonly accepted ideas such as learning styles, left-brain/right-brain dominance and too literal interpretations of the 70-20-10 rule. Trying to keep up with all of the new ideas, tools and techniques available in the learning industry can become a full-time job!

 

What recommendations do you have when implementing new and innovative tools in the training process?

My recommendation is that you should roll out a new tool the way you would start a new business.  In short, you need a “business plan.” Among other things, the plan should articulate:

1) What you hope to accomplish by introducing the new tool

2) How you will accomplish this

3) Details on the stakeholders and audience for this tool (describing, essentially, what’s in it for them; also, providing a change management approach)

4) The budget and timeframes for the rollout

5) Potential impediments to the rollout (e.g., infrastructure, technology, support, etc.) and steps to mitigate them

6) A cost/benefit analysis, etc.

A careful review up-front can make the actual release much easier.  In some cases, it could head off a disastrous rollout had these steps not been taken.

 


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