An Overview of Universal Design for Learning

A Heightened Awareness of Accommodations

At a recent Toastmasters officers meeting in a popular coffee house, the club secretary asked me to switch seats with him. While I didn’t have a problem switching, I was curious why he wanted me to move. He informed me that as our meeting’s notetaker—and left-handed person—he needed a space conducive for taking notes. My seat was the only space at the table that met his need.

As an Instructional Designer, his request made me think about Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and the importance of designing environments to meet the needs of everyone. Continue reading “An Overview of Universal Design for Learning”

Confessions of an eLearning Student Worker

We’ve often shared how our experiences before coming to instructional design influence our work. As an eLearning team in higher education, we have the opportunity to work with traditional college students.

Our student workers come from a variety of backgrounds, and while most will not go on to work in instructional design, the experiences they gain with us strengthen their workplace skills and resume. Our students find value working with our team, and they’re excited to add their voice to Model eLearning.

Celeste Fendt
Photo credit: Asacia Norris of Junie B. Photography

Today, we’ll hear from junior Celeste Fendt. Celeste is a professional writing major and Associate Editor for Spring Arbor University’s student newspaper, The Pulse, and she plans to work in advertising after she graduates.
Continue reading “Confessions of an eLearning Student Worker”

Rest from your Labors

Monday was Labor Day here in the States.

We were at a BBQ.

Classes start this week.

We ate too much BBQ and can’t find our keyboards.

Some of us were making spaghetti sauce.

OMG, CLASSES START THIS WEEK!

These are just a few of the many reasons why we’re taking this week off from giving you new content. We’ll return to our regular schedule next week.

Choosing the Right Tool to Design Interactive Scenarios

Have you ever had an idea you knew was good but didn’t truly understand the work involved until you began laboring to make it a reality?

This happened to me when I started changing one of the assignments in my history class into a branching scenario. Continue reading “Choosing the Right Tool to Design Interactive Scenarios”

HOLIDAY TIME!

It’s the 4th of July weekend here in America, so we’re on the beach. Or setting off fireworks. Or just “up north” (it’s a Michigan thing). We’ll be back to our regularly scheduled content next week.

We were gonna pretend that we had some relevant way to tie this into eLearning, but it turns out sometimes, you just need to chill.

beach-coast-65900

Motivating Learners: Speaking Relevance to Your eLearning Course

As a former broadcaster, Michelle loves to share insights using audio and video tools. We’re excited to announce her posts will now be available in dual formats—on YouTube as well as the blog.

As I read the recent Motivation in Education series authored by my eLearning colleague Ann Broda, I was reminded of Monroe’s Motivated Sequence, a common technique used in persuasive speaking. Continue reading “Motivating Learners: Speaking Relevance to Your eLearning Course”

Making your eLearning Assignments More Interactive

History is rich and vivid, and it shouldn’t be presented in a way that students see as dry.  As an adjunct history instructor, I am always looking for ways to motivate students to explore history and to look at it from different perspectives. I’ve discovered that infusing a scenario-based assignment engages learners and encourages them to think outside the box. Continue reading “Making your eLearning Assignments More Interactive”

Engage your Learners with Interactive Video

“In addition to enhancing learning, video can also reduce training time. It’s easier and takes less time to watch a well-made video than it does to read through pages of dense text or complicated diagrams to grasp a concept.”

Andy Cole (Via Brainshark; originally included in The Benefits of Video in eLearning)

In my last post, we explored some benefits of using scenarios in eLearning. Today, we will examine the value of learning with interactive videos using PlayPosit. Continue reading “Engage your Learners with Interactive Video”

From On Air to Online

When you were a kid, what were some of your favorite games and activities? Oftentimes, insight into a child’s future career can be gained by watching how they play.

One of my favorite “toys” as a kid was my family’s handy-dandy cassette recorder. Although now archaic, it was cutting edge in the 70s. My love for recording began at age three, as I unashamedly performed such songs as “Happy Birthday” and “Old Susanna.” As I got older, I started putting together my own radio shows, which I thought were genius works of comedy.

So, how did this childhood interest translate into a career? I became a professional broadcaster. Continue reading “From On Air to Online”

Get students fired up with scenario-based eLearning

 

Want to get students fired up about learning? Then present a problem and ask them for a solution. Scenario-based instruction will grab your student’s attention and keep them engaged in the learning experience. In this post, I will give some definitions of scenario-based learning, identify some of the benefits it offers, and explain when to use it in your online course. Continue reading “Get students fired up with scenario-based eLearning”