It’s that time of year again (if you work in education anyway). Students are returning. Classes are starting. Here in the Midwest, we’ve got crisp fall mornings and dew on the ground. Syllabi are being doled out like (unwanted) candy, and expressions of eagerness and anticipation will soon be replaced by glazed eyes and existential dread.
And for the first time in about a decade, I’m joining the crowd.
Continue reading “Back to School: The Next Step to Becoming an eLearning Expert”
We’ve talked before about how eLearning is a broad field that involves many disciplines. So, if you want to learn something specific to further your design skill, or just for your own personal development, it’s pretty easy to find a book that will help you on your way. In fact, Jessica wrote a pretty good list of books related to eLearning just last week.
But I want to approach that list from a slightly different angle: what not-at-all eLearning related books can we draw eLearning lessons from?
Continue reading “Reading Wide: Learning from Beyond Instructional Design”
Ever save a file with a random name, only to not be able to
find it later? If only you’d named it something meaningful! The same can be
said for naming your eLearning materials.
Continue reading “Choosing Meaningful Names for your eLearning”
In the past I’ve talked about how it’s important to not let efficiency get in the way of trying to master a new skill or tool. Today, I want to expand on that a little bit and argue that sometimes, leaning too much into monetary efficiency is bad.
Yeah. Sometimes you just gotta spend money.
I’m not saying be frivolous. But rather try not to get locked into design patters solely by financial concerns. Let me explain.
Continue reading “Managing your Digital Toolbox”
So, over the holiday break, in-between stuffing my face with food and watching holiday movies (yes, Die Hard counts), I took some time to catch up on my podcast backlog. Particularly, Limetown.
Continue reading “The eLearning Communication Loop”
A few members of our team (myself included) are preparing to present at the Symposium on Universal Design for Instruction and Learning. We’ve also got course starts, a project list as long as my arm, and new assessment tools we’re implementing in our LMS. And with the holidays fast approaching, needless to say, it’s just a teeny bit busy around here.
Then I discovered I had to write a blog post. Continue reading “Abandoning Dead End Ideas”
If you work in any sort of creative field, you’re going to fall into the occasional rut. Your work feels repetitive and boring. Uninspired. You find yourself taking convenient solutions rather than best solutions. Or, maybe you just can’t think your way through a problem and you have no solution at all. Your brain starts to slow down. You churn on the same thought patterns for unreasonable amounts of time. You’re just stuck.
Getting stuck sucks.
Continue reading “Beating the Dreaded Design Slump”
When I started in eLearning (just over a year ago now), I really had no idea what I was getting myself into. I came from a background in IT and creative writing, so while it’s theoretically a simple matter to apply some of those skills to ID work, finding the practical application of those skills in an entirely new arena was…challenging. Continue reading “Two Big Things™ I Learned in my first year in Instructional Design”
Can we all agree that paying recurring costs for licensing software, particularly when you are a small (or even one-person) team, sucks? It ends up being a large, recurring cost that can be difficult to justify or subsidize, particularly in lean times. Oftentimes you don’t even need all the new and shiny features that a regular subscription provides.
But purchasing software outright (when it’s still an option, as many companies no longer offer it) can have a prohibitively expensive up-front cost—high-end software often costs upwards of $1000 dollars, even for just a single license.
But, free tools aren’t always the answer either. Continue reading “Budget (but not free) eLearning Content Creation Tools”
Many people are familiar with the concept of the digital divide—the idea that as technology continues to advance at a remarkable pace, there is a growing gulf between the “haves” and the “have-nots” when it comes to access to, and adoption of technologies. Many in instructional design consider these technologies essential for our day-to-day careers: internet access, easy access to information, and ubiquitous WiFi. Which makes it challenging when we design content for those who don’t have easy access to those things.
But, there’s another gulf forming in Instructional Design. Continue reading “The New Digital Divide in Instructional Design”