Top 25 Learning Management Systems

I love the eLearning Brothers. First, I love their name (they really are brothers!), their look, and their style. Their branding is seamless, tight-knit, and does not waiver or change. Plus, they keep an updated blog and their free templates are totally worth a look-through.

This blog post is from October of last year, but it is so relevant every day! The Top 10 Articulate Storyline Games of the Year make me smile because they prove that eLearning is fun and games are NOT just for kids. However, I’m noticing that the KISS method is applied here, generously. Especially if you’re taking handfuls of time and energy to develop something so engaging. In my line of work, these engaging and playful tools are never mandatory (aka they do not count as a grade if you play around with it) and always supplemental.

Think about using these games if you fall into a hairy situation like I did in my last course! In this project management course, students have to take a final exam that is 10% of their final grade. It sounds small, but that 10% can make or break a student who needs a 70% or above to pass.

For studying purposes, they had their textbook and two pages of sample multiple choice questions at the end of each chapter.

a) If I am a student, I’m grazing over those question/answer pages as fast as possible. Why? The answers are on the same page…my eyes dart RIGHT to that answer key and it’s all over.

b) As a graduate student, I have a full-time job, possibly a family. Do I have time to read and take notes on every little detail of my textbook reading this week? Probably not…will my studying habits falter? You bet!

c) Regardless of what I’m doing as a graduate student, I am in need of immediate feedback. Once I get that immediate feedback and I’m not correct, I need immediate information to replace my misunderstanding of the right answer and actually absorb the correct information!

That’s why I made these:

Easy breezy PowerPoints quizzes narrated by yours truly. They live on Office Mix, however guess what feature is lacking in the playback and interactivity? The clicky COLORS! :

Office Mix said that with their new updated software that the slideshow of any Mix shown within PowerPoint would be the exact replica that you would find living in Office Mix cyberspace…(fourth bullet from the top)

They are wrong! You cannot click triggered boxes to make them change colors UNLESS you created identical slides that link to the clickable boxes. Those identical slides would need to have color differentiation. Too many slides, too much linking, too much wasted time. I was NOT about to add 40 more slides to each PPT. Baloney. 

Needless to say, I gave students the ability to download the presentations so they will be able to preview them on their computer and take the interactive quizzes themselves. Oh, and did I mention I made 13 of them? 10 questions each! Yippee!

All in all, Storyline would have been a better match for my needs. Lesson learned!

MOOCs at ERAU

mooc

What I didn’t add on my Facebook is that none other than YOURS TRULY will be developing the October MOOC for ERAU! Yippee skippy! I learn all about it tomorrow! Select the image above to learn more!

~~~

In OTHER awesome news…the WAVE OF THE FUTURE IS HERE LADIES AND GENTS!

like love

DID YOU SEE?? THEY DID IT!!! THEY ACTUALLY DID IT!!! Our world is changing, folks. After so long of just being able to Like a status, FACEBOOK unleashed new emotions! We’ve got Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad, and Angry! I can’t even contain myself! This is incredible!

Okay, am I overreacting? I think not. The Like Button is a house hold term and phrase.

Did you like my photo?
Did you see ____liked it?
I just unliked and liked this again because I like it so much!

The controversy I am afraid of is the like vs love icon. Is someone going to have a hissy fit because their boyfriend only liked their photo and didn’t love it? Just imagine the controversy. I’ll just sit back with my popcorn and watch =)

Keeping promises, resolutions…

mooc

I was doing so well with blogging! Life gets busy. It truly does. Now, if my main job function was to blog post all day, I’d be DYNO-MITE at my job 🙂 I’m pretty great at the things I’m actually supposed to be doing, so that’s a plus.

I just started two MOOCs today: Instructional Design Service Course: Gain Experience for Good & Web Accessibility MOOC for Educators.

My main focus for these two MOOCs is to check out their structures, network, and find out how other people implement IDD-focused strategies and accessbility into their courses.

One of my professional goals is to create a MOOC – I’m building one at ERAU-WW! I am SO thrilled to be given this task! It’s important to be able to showcase what we do and how well we do it. Yippee!!

Fads in E-Learning: Microlearning

digitalchalk-what-is-micro-learningWhile reading Jennifer Yaros’ new post, it lead me to Microlearning: The e-Learning method taking off around the world. Then, I thought about my own learning and experiences.

I am a trivia geek. My husband and I can slay anyone in trivia matches. Not to mention I’m gaining momentum in the iOS app, Trivia Crack. I love learning useless (IMHO – not so useless) facts. I love nonfiction ANYTHING and thrive on the humanities and science as a way to live my life passionately. I take a lot of the knowledge that I possess and develop common sense strategies and answers for questions that pertain to any subject. I find that this way of info-blasting and microlearning has helped my overall well-rounded knowledge.

Microlearning defines learning experiences that are much briefer than a traditional course – referring to relatively small learning units and short-term learning activities.

Chunk it UP & dice it! Pick out only the best pieces and roll with it!

This idea of spewing a ton of information in a short amount of time has been going on for a few years now. Headings and subheadings with small paragraphs that get to the nitty-gritty are my most favorite pieces of literature, and I hope this style never goes away. I LOVE the idea of reading “just the facts” without any lingering details (which are always completely unnecessary). But that’s how my brain works! My brain does not have time or energy for fluff.

I have a feeling, though, that the world will eliminate the fluff sooner or later.

So, let’s transition from Buzzfeed-esque articles to e-Learning. Microlearning is a blast of information in a short amount of time. Isn’t that what everyone is given? A short amount of time? How appropriate! Translate this idea to all 9-5 job situations: “Mr. So-and-so…I need you to learn this new aspect of your job by yesterday. Can you do that for me? That’d be grreeaaatt.”

Yeah well, yesterday already happened…so…

From a business perspective, almost 90% of associations use some form of technology to enable or enhance learning and more than half (52.8%) of associations that use technology for learning have increased their organisation’s net revenue from educational offerings.

Fewer than a third (31.5%) of organisations that report using technology for learning say they use technology to repeat, reinforce, or sustain learning after participants complete an educational product or service. Another 29.4% say they plan to in the coming year.

Close to 50% of organisations integrate the data they collect in their learning technology platforms with the data from other technology platforms they use.

Well, I’m happy. Why? I am not too sure microlearning is just a fad- it could be here to stay!

#Simulations in #eLearning

I went to the I/ITSEC Conference back in November of 2015. I was able to witness and try a lot of physical simulators geared towards the field of aeronautics and military forces. Simulators from Lockheed Martin, Meggitt, and Engility are some companies that work directly with the department of defense.

In addition to these companies, there were many simulators that lined up directly with supportive e-learning. When I asked specificially if they could gear a program towards X, the cost went through the roof. How do universities combat the price of simulations just yet? Grants. Who has time to write grants when you’ve got a course to develop? When is it worth the time and effort?

Currently, I’m working with a course developer who wanted to add in a project management simulator to her IT-PM course. Awesome! So, where do we look for simulations that are cost-effective and worthy of students’ time?

Mind you, these are students will full-time jobs and families. They need to pass this class in 9 weeks to fulfill a degree to move up in their company and provide for their family! It is important that they receive worthy information and spend their time wisely to learn as much as they can.

I think it is awesome when someone can appreciate the free gems of the internet. That Project Management Game is a very simple tool that is free to use as many times as necessary. In our course, students will be using this tool to make notes on whether or not it would be a beneficial simulator for trainees. Is it comparable to the workplace? What could be added to make it better? What benefits or disadvantages do you see to this tool?

For a little more substance and rigor, we are also going to use the Havard Business Review’s Project Management Simulation v2 at an awesome price. With 90 minutes of simulation time, students can grab it for $15. For a masters degree program, that’s a pretty good deal!

maxresdefault

The second release of this simulation adds a new scenario with multiple unanticipated events and the ability to add prototypes to the project plan. In this single-player simulation, students take on the role of a senior project manager and manage a team tasked with developing a new product for an electronics manufacturing company. The primary objectives are to execute a project plan successfully and deliver a competitive product on time and on budget. Instructors can assign up to 6 scenarios that expose students to realistic challenges that project managers often face, especially when working in a highly competitive industry. Some challenges require students to react to unanticipated outside events, such as a staffing crisis, while others require students to respond to strategic changes mandated by upper management. A new project lever for specifying prototypes allows students to explore the benefits of this essential component of agile project management.

I am so excited for this course! I am thrilled to be working with my course developer. We have developed two courses so far and she’s a rockstar!