Engage Learners with Instructional GIFs

You can’t really go anywhere on the internet without running into the ubiquitous animated GIF (graphical interchange format). Originating in 1987, GIFs shaped—and grew—with the internet in the following 30+ years (for those who missed the 90s or want to reminisce, the Internet Archive created a search for early GIFs).

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Encourage Collaboration on your eLearning Team

Like all design environments, our eLearning ecosystem includes a range of job titles, skillsets, experiences, and personalities. Building a successful team takes more than bringing skilled individuals together—you also need to encourage collaborative team culture.

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Summer Reads for Instructional Designers and Learning Professionals 2019

Summer’s a special time to read. Maybe it’s at the park, in a hammock, or under a tree. Or maybe you’re on the beach with the sound of the waves filling the gaps between the turn of the page. For me, it’s often listening to an audiobook while on a walk—something about it helps my mind drift into creative possibilities.

As instructional designers, summer’s a great time to explore related fields to stretch your skills and the way you think about design (and perhaps beat the dreaded design slump). †So, here’s a few books to inspire you.

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Learning from Stories

Have you ever lost yourself in a story? There’s nothing quite like it. The whole world passes by as you absorb the plot, setting, and characters. When you return (a little blurry-eyed) to reality, your whole perspective shifts to adjust to what you’ve experienced. After immersing yourself in the narrative, you have changed.

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Bring Simplicity to Your eLearning Design

Each day, the amount of data created increases by about 2.5 quintillion bytes, and 90 percent of the data in existence comes from the past two years (Marr, 2018). Without a guide (or a friendly-neighborhood librarian), it’s impossible to sort through that much data on our own. It’s no wonder our learners struggle with information overload (“Information Overload,” 2019).

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Collaborating on an eLearning Parallel Development

Our university delivers courses in multiple modalities: traditional face-to-face classrooms, online, and also in blended (sometimes called hybrid) learning environments. Some students prefer the structure of meeting in class each week, while others need the flexibility online courses provide. Each modality provides students a way to achieve learning outcomes while addressing different learning needs.

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Three eLearning and Higher Education Trends for 2019

In December 2018, I sat down with Tara, our Lead Instructional Designer, to ask her about the trends she sees influencing eLearning and higher education in 2019. Tara consulted in various industries over the years. She now keeps the entire history of our team in her memory. Let’s see what she has to say.

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2018: Reflecting on a Year of Growth

We’ve reached the end of 2018—and what a year it’s been! From increasing the number of posts on the blog to presenting at conferences, it’s been a busy year for our team.

When we started Model eLearning, we decided to share content every other week. This year, we challenged ourselves to double that (yeah, we might have been a little crazy).

Your enthusiasm for the extra content lets us know we’re on the right track, though, so thank you for that! Over the year, we’ve met great people online and in person, and those conversations helped shape the topics and tone of Model eLearning. 

Let’s look at a few highlights from 2018.

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Review: UX + LX App (And a Look at the Future of Learning Design)

Disclaimer: I’ve downloaded the UX + LX mobile app to my devices for personal use. I didn’t receive compensation for this review.

UX + LX icon
UX + LX mobile app (FREE, available for iOS and Android devices)

According to Pew Research Center, more people own smartphones than computers. When people don’t have anything to do, we pull out our ubiquitous devices. Imagine if we had as many learning apps as games and other apps—every moment would be an opportunity to learn (personalized learning, here we come!).

As Tara share in her post about universal design for learning, mobile learning, or mLearning, looms before us. Yet we still design learning within the confines of a learning management system (LMS) accessed by a computer. 

UX + LX takes us outside of the traditional LMS and into a true mobile learning experience.

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Remove Barriers to Learning with Design and Plain Writing

Over the summer, we updated our online general education syllabus template using learning theory, universal design for learning (UDL), plain writing, and accessibility principles. Recently, Dave, Tara, and I presented this process at Continue reading “Remove Barriers to Learning with Design and Plain Writing”