How Mobile Learning Works

mlearning

Everything about the way the mobile market is expanding to every corner of the world is fascinating. With the number of mobile devices that connect the entire planet set to breach the 7 billion mark in 2014, every activity we do is being re-defined, whether it is shopping, banking, working, or learning.

Mobile devices have become as ubiquitous as human population. It is almost impossible to go anywhere without bumping into sea of people using cell phones. With the advent of new mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, and others, mobile computing is finally coming of age globally, quickly outpacing its desktop sibling. The mobile web growth which has reached its pinnacle is showing no signs of slowing down. In short, mobile market, which constitutes apps, software, hardware, services and infrastructure, is going to be a vital participant in the development of the next generation human facilities and processes, learning being one of them.

M-Learning

The definition of M-learning keeps changing and even as we talk about it, there is always a new addition happening to the existing standard of mobile learning. In its simplest form, M-learning can be called that form of learning where there is no requirement for the learner to be stationary at a predetermined location. The advantages of various mobile technologies come into play here as the learning methodology focuses on the mobility of the learner and his interaction with portable devices such as smartphones, MP3 players, tablets and other smart devices. Online learning when combined with the power of mobile devices give rise to M-learning.

The FRAME Model

The Framework for the Rational Analysis of Mobile Education (FRAME) model is used to describe the mobile learning process.
The Venn diagram aptly represents the three aspects of mobile learning, Device, Learner and Social. The Device aspect refers to the various capabilities of the mobile device that includes its specifications, physical and functional characteristics. These characteristics have a significant impact on the usage habits of the learner and therefore require a comprehensive investigation before being implemented. Acting as a bridge between human being and technology, devices should be designed for maximum comfort.

mobile learning

The Learner aspect focuses on the cognitive abilities of the learner such as context and transfer, memory, prior knowledge, emotions and motivations and discovery learning. Mobile learning helps the learner access content in various formats and these factors have a vital role to play in the encoding, recalling and transfer of information. The Social aspect takes into account the various interactions between two learners with their mobile devices while following the rules of cooperation to communicate. However, what we are really concerned about is the area where all these three aspects intersect each other.

Mobile Learning Process (DLS)

It is the intersection of all the three aspects in the FRAME model that facilitates mobile learning. The interaction of Device, Learner and Social is what defines mobile learning, which itself is an ever-evolving process.

As the amount of knowledge increases, it is necessary to rapidly evaluate it for worthiness and that’s where mobile learning comes into help. Governed by flexible social, technological and cognitive factors, mobile learning helps users get immediate access to knowledge and experts, who help in determining the relevance and importance of the information found on the Internet.

So how mobile capability does enhance learning?

To summarize it all, mobile capability helps in learning by facilitating interaction and collaboration, creation of a learning community and providing access to a variety of online resources in real time.

Mobile learning implementation

Duke University provided all its incoming freshmen with their own 20-gigabytes of iPods. Similarly, Virginia Tech College was the first public institution that required every student to purchase a tablet PC beginning with incoming freshman in 2006 fall.

Apart from schools and colleges, mobile learning is also making its presence felt in workplaces. Instant messaging is going to replace email as the new generation prefers synchronous tools to asynchronous ones. Every person who possesses a Smartphone is in the capacity of perpetrating the learning content and applications.

Author- Saurabh Tyagi is an expert writer having interest in diverse topics like education, technology, career and Web 2.0. He is a social media enthusiast and a self-confessed gadget-freak, who loves to follow the latest happenings in the tech world.

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Top 5 Trends – Where Technology Will Take Elearning in 5 Years

1. Technology Will Drive Collaborative Learning

Collaboration is no longer a hyped-up buzz word; it’s everywhere. It’s being fostered in the workplace because sometimes the best ideas come from just having conversations with others. Facebook, Google, Yahoo – the biggest and brightest are all following this model – and it’s bound to be the next step for elearning. As one respondent wrote “I hope that technology will enable all participants to contribute to the learning experience. Learning will become a collaborative experience not led by a traditional ‘facilitator’ pushing content out to consumers, but will result in shared knowledge, experiences and opinions from all to create the ‘content’.”

2. Elearning & Mlearning Will Be In Constant Regeneration

While we can see how technology can enable a collaborative elearning system, what if in unison, the Internet is also part of the equation? Imagine your elearning module automatically picking up brand new images via tags, categories, and systematically updating your module with new content. Think about it this way: new laws or regulations are put in place and your old compliance module is void null; the Internet, which is the first medium to pick up this news, will update any content on your module that needs to be fixed. “Once a course is created the information is redundant. The next logical step would be to allow the content to change automatically through sources on the Internet (pictures, content, etc.)”

3. Augmented Realities Will Be The Norm

If Google glasses are already a reality, what’s next? “Learning will become highly augmented…learning about architecture whilst standing at the opera house, looking at what you discussed. This followed by holographic teachers who can stand beside you and help you physically. Finally virtual classrooms through a projected self-meaning you can attend a lecture or tutorial in person even though you’re kicking back with Richard B on his island ;)”

4. Technology Used To Fulfil User’s Needs – Not To Impress Them

Just because it’s cool, doesn’t mean it’s going to help learners. We all know what happens with trends; they hit a peak and then slowly fade away. Technology is not something that should hinder the learning experience because of the cool factor; rather it should effectively foster the user and heighten their knowledge and skillset. “Technology is just another means to deliver the learning of new knowledge, skills and attitudes – we need to ensure we don’t add the bells and the whistles for the sake of it. It’s like they say on Masterchef, sometimes the best food consists of three well-balanced, quality ingredients. If the technology is poorly used, we’ll be faced by another cohort of learners screaming: “Not another elearning course! PLEASE!!!”

5. Creating Better Blends

On the other hand, maybe technology will drive users back into the classroom. “I’d like to see technology drive elearning back into the classroom . . . within reason! It would be great to see technology developments that enable much better integration of online content within traditional classroom environments. Often this is attempted, but it’s not often not seamless for participants – technology that better enables in classroom connection of content with facilitators with real participants would be great.”

Courtesy : 

eLearning On Tablets

eLearning On Tablets - Free eBook

We truly believe tablets are a game changer and that there is strong merit indelivering eLearning on tablets. Tablets are no longer limited to entertainment purposes like watching video or playing games; but now are a part of organizational L&D activities across businesses large and small. The tablet market is showing exponential growth with tablet sales touted to overtake that of notebook PCs with an estimated volume of 240 million units sold worldwide by 2015.

eLearning on Tablets-Tablets VS. PC Shipments

We find that while on one hand there is a growing demand for learning solutions on tablets, on the other, there is a clear lack of understanding of these media devices, and the designing and development approaches required. Training departments are unsure how to design and develop eLearning on tablets in a way that works for their organizations.

 

Top 21 Tips For Mobile Learning

Top 21 tips for mobile learning

The eLearningGuild recently released a great resource “158 Tips on mLearning: From Planning to Implementation”. Very interestingly, in the introduction Chris Benz says – the big question last year was “Should we do mLearning?” The question this year is “How should we do mLearning?” It’s a fantastic change – one that we’ve been looking forward to a few years now.

While the report features some of the mobile learning gurus I already follow, it pops up some new ones to follow. I’ve listed below the 21 that appealed most to me. No surprise that some of these have been covered on this blog too earlier. I encourage you to take a look at the whole set of 158 tips as there are some real gems (beyond these handpicked 21) in there.

  1. Start lean and iterate. You don’t need to launch a perfect app for your first ver- sion. Start with a minimum viable product and go from there. Get user feedback, and grow your feature set based on the response you get from people actively using your experience. Combine this with analytics and you have a powerful one- two punch in understanding what people expect from you. The most important thing you can do is ship your software. Don’t let unnecessary features hold up launch dates.

    – Chad Udell

  2. Always ask questions and observe. Don’t be afraid of research because you assume it’s expensive and complex. You can get surprising amounts of useful information by simply watching end users in their natural environment, or care- fully asking questions about how they work and what they do. If you aren’t used to research, don’t directly ask what they want – and avoid focus groups because people don’t consciously know what they want and the group dynamic is hard to handle and influences the results. Do show off your design ideas as early as you can. People will suspend their disbelief and act like your paper sketch – or a mockup on the phone – is real, and react in telling ways.

    – Steven Hoober

  3. Two fields that are about to converge are mobile computing and adaptive-learn- ing software. Companies will use “big data” collected from massive numbers of learners to predict the kind of learning materials a specific learner needs to see next, and what kind of activities and assessments will advance learning based on the learner’s characteristics and responses. 

    – Gary Woodill

  4. Consider the context in which your users work. Not just the default answer that mobile is active, but very specifically. If users are on the factory floor, or in a re- pair shop, are their hands too greasy for reliable touch, or is it too loud for mobile sound to work? A good way to think about this is to consider accessibility needs; we all become “temporarily disabled” when we can’t touch, look at, or otherwise use our devices normally. Then you can use existing knowledge and technologies to meet the real needs of your actual users. 

    – Steven Hoober

  5. When designing for multiple devices, think “intelligent responsive.” Consider op- tions such as simplifying content when needed and adding extra content when it makes sense, changing what is displayed or how it is displayed depending on the accessing device, and you’ll produce training that is effective and impactful no matter how it is accessed. 

    – Paul Schneider

  6. Think about your mobile learners as contributors, not just consumers. Your mo- bile learners often know a lot about their part of the organization, and enabling them to share can satisfy their desire to create and contribute. Enabling content generation also allows you to harness your learners’ knowledge. 

    – Lauren Bonnet and Ben Bonnet

  7. Help your learners feel productive. The psychology of your learners will play a big role in how they feel about your learning content. We know that people like to feel productive, particularly when they are at work. Design your learning con- tent so your learners can feel like they are checking off items on a checklist. 

    – Lauren Bonnet and Ben Bonnet

  8. Start with pencil or pen and paper. Sketching is a vital part of the design process for mobile user interface and user experience design. Use a grid notebook and sketch at the appropriate aspect ratio for accuracy. For maximum effect, use a sketch template to assist you with scale and user-interface elements. 

    – Chad Udell

  9. Every day we talk to and work with others. Multi-user experiences are how our world works, and so how our digital experiences will function whether we want them to or not. Allow for things like arbitrary sharing, over email, SMS, MMS, Facebook, Twitter, or whatever is available. Flexibility like this, which is easy to build into mobile apps at least, allows the user to weave your digital product or tool into the way their life already works. 

    – Steven Hoober

  10. “M” is for multi, not mobile. When thinking about mobile eLearning design, re- member how and why people are going to use the content. Different devices and screens can support different types of learning more effectively. Smartphone de- vices are great performance support tools for example, while desktops and even tablets generally handle deeper, more complex learning well. Sometimes creating courses that you design for each device and that complement each other is the best route to go. 

    – Paul Schneider

  11. Too much that you’ve heard of about designing for touch is wrong, outdated, or personal opinion. Even OS guidelines like the 44px Apple size is a little too small and over-simplified. Instead, follow the research, and design for what we know about how people work with capacitive touch:
    1. Touch targets must be big enough to be contacted by users’ fingers and detected by the touch sensor. Make them at least 17pt (6mm) and prefer- ably 23pt (8mm). There’s no need to make buttons, lists, or other such items larger than about 43pt (15mm) in the smallest dimension.
    2. Make sure your users don’t hit the wrong target by spacing out the targets enough. Measured from the center, make sure nothing else is inside a circle at least 23pt (8mm) across, and if at all possible, 28pt (10mm).

    – 
Steven Hoober

  12. Context is all about when and where learners will use your app. This can be difficult to determine, but it is vitally important. It’s not enough to just assume that because your users are mobile, they are in a rush and only want quick access to limited information. Eighty-four percent of us use our mobile phones while at home (source:http://www.lukew.com/Learning/ff/entry.asp?1263) Don’t as- sume you know where your users will use your application. Get out of the office (or hire someone) and do some testing. If you make assumptions based on when and where you think your users are going to be using your app, you’re bound to disappoint. 

    – Tim Todish

  13. Before choosing a development tool for an mLearning project, you must weigh the requirements of the project. Will your app use the device’s camera? Will you need geolocation? How about the accelerometer? A lot of popular mobile devel- opment tools (minus the native languages) have varying degrees of support for the native APIs of mobile operating systems. Realizing, in the mature stage of a project, that you need access to one of these native APIs and it’s not available can be enough to send you back to the drawing board. 

    – Perry Bennett

  14. Tame your mLearning video assets! Remember the mobile context – interrup- tions, connectivity issues, screen size, browser limitations, etc. Recommenda- tions include chunking segments into clips of less than five minutes, keeping file sizes smaller for download (around 4 MB), publishing to a compatible file format such as MP4, testing to find the best bitrate for the video size and resolution, and leveraging the “interactiveness” of mobile. Curate your searchable video so that learners (and you) can find it when needed.

    – Candice Herndon

  15. Own the performance support world. Sometimes instructional designers think of themselves as providers of training and assume that performance support is someone else’s job. Mobile learning is all about supporting the learner at
the point of need, which is the realm of performance support. All instructional designers should embrace this new role as performance support providers – or someone else will. 

    – Lauren Bonnet and Ben Bonnet

  16. The easiest way to deliver engaging mobile performance support is via short one- to two-minute videos. MP4 (MPEG4) video is consumable on 90 to 95 percent of mobile devices. 

    – Josh Cavalier

  17. Think of tablets when the mobility requirements aren’t too onerous, when you need screen real estate for data display, or when users will share the screen with others. Or – perish the thought-when you’re actually going to try to give users a course on a mobile device. 

    – Clark Quinn

  18. Build once, deploy everywhere, is a myth. For the last few years, people have been claiming that technologies like HTML5 offer the opportunity to build once and deploy everywhere. The truth is this is rarely the case. Except in the cases of very simple applications, you will almost certainly need to tailor your designs forthe various devices you are targeting. This doesn’t mean one design per device, but it does mean you will need to create a few different versions of your designs to account for varying screen sizes. Responsive web design is a nice way to solve this problem, but it is not as simple as the build once, deploy everywhere myth might lead you to believe. 

    – Tim Todish

  19. You cannot assume mobile users sit down and engage with your digital tool for any amount of time. They get distracted, and interrupted, or decide to complete tasks later when in other locations or with other devices. They expect their data to follow them, so be prepared to save data entered, and even scrolled-to posi- tion and searches. Let all that feed into the display of any other channel when users resume. Have messages and notifications remind users to finish tasks, and set up your success metrics and analytics to track across platforms so you can re- act to the way people actually work, and not panic at all the users leaving a single channel, if they come back later or in another channel. 

    – Steven Hoober

  20. Plan for measurements and metrics. You’re going to need to adjust the ways
you measure success. While your LMS may have some measurement options for mLearning, there are a lot of other options out there. Integrating in-app analyt- ics (Flurry, Google Analytics, Omniture, or others) is a must. Creating a landing page at your site (internal or external depending on your needs) for the app store or MDM/MAM (mobile device management/mobile application management) traffic is a basic requirement. And even using simple eCommerce-like conversion tools like promo codes and integrating a social-media-measurement platform like Hubspot, Hootsuite, or Owl.ly could all be smart things to do. This approach will show you who is sharing content out of your app, and more importantly, behavior patterns that your users are exhibiting while in your experience. 

    – Chad Udell

  21. Marshall McLuhan, the 1960s communications guru, wrote, “We look at the present through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future.” That is why each new technology tries to use the content and methods from the previ- ous technology. Version 1.0 of a technology is mostly about the ideas of the past. Version 2.0 starts when someone starts to develop new applications that use the unique affordances of the new technology. Mobile learning is in Version 1.5. Ver- sion 2.0 is coming soon. 

    – Gary Woodill

Mobile Learning: mAssessments Through Text Messages

Mobile Learning-The Third World Solution

According to the ‘2013 Internet Trends’ report by Mary Meeker and Liang Wu, partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), India is ranked fifth in the world in terms of number of smartphone subscribers, with a staggering 67 million smartphone users.

From the CEO of a company to the housekeeping staff of a multinational corporation and from the principal of a college to a 5th grade student in a school, smartphones find themselves firmly entrenched in India’s technological landscape.

However, the report also says that the penetration of smartphones as a percentage of mobile users in India is still just 6%. This percentage, according to the report, is the lowest among the top 30 smartphone markets.

There could be a couple of reasons for that; firstly, many people may not see the need to use a smartphone on a daily basis; secondly, many may not be able to afford one. There are millions of such people in India who still carry mobiles with the most basic of functions, many of who mainly populate the rural parts of the country.

With mLearning initiatives targeted mostly at tablets and smartphones, there is a huge but yet largely untapped potential for mLearning in the country. Tapping this potential could bring a multitude of benefits not just to organizations but also to educational institutions looking for innovative ways to engage their students.

Here’s an easy, simple way in which we can take the first step in getting mLearning to such mobile users.

mAssessments

Taking a cue from the marketing community, the presentation of eLearning assessments on mobiles can be slightly modified as follows.

Learners who do not have smartphones can take the course on desktops at local computer institutes, designated regional government establishments, etc. and then opt for taking the assessments on their mobile phones. Here’s how this type of mAssessment might work.

The learner will be required to answer the questions as we answer any marketing SMSs. The assessment questions could be sent to their phones one at a time. The number of answer options in each question would depend on the nature of the question. All the learner will need to do is reply with the correct option’s number or letter, particularly if the question is a multiple choice single answer type. For multiple choice multiple answer type questions, the learner can answer with the answers separated by, for example, commas. For instance, if the answer to a question is options 2, 3, and 5, then the learner can simply send an SMS: 2, 3, 5. These answers may or may not be preceded by question numbers i.e., Q1, 2, 3, 5. The learner can simply send Q1 3 if the question is multiple choice single answer type. The feedback then can be immediately texted to him or her, thus enabling the individual to make informed decisions.

This kind of partial mobile learning is likely to provide dual benefits to the learners. One, they can take the assessments at their own convenience, much later after their regular eLearning session is over or may be after further studying the topics offline. Second, they can take the assessment just before they apply the knowledge learnt in their respective areas of work, thereby ensuring success at each new task they undertake, such as operating agricultural equipment or factory machinery for the first time. For example, if an individual is supposed to start, and later operate, an upgraded or newly installed piece of heavy machinery for the first time and needs to reinforce his knowledge about the first step in that process, that individual could be sent a message with a question with options on how he or she may do that. As mentioned above, an immediate feedback would provide timely confirmation of the correctness of actions the learner intends to take. SMS feedback could be supplemented or supported by other forms of feedback.

So, no need to wait for a smartphone in every hand. It’s the regular cellphone that can be handled smartly. Cheers to mobile learning.

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Top 10 eLearning Industry Trends For 2013

Top 10 eLearning Industry Trends For 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As per the market predictions by GSV advisors, the global eLearning market is estimated to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 23% over 2012-2017. In dollars, this translates into $90 bn to $166.5 bn in 2012 and $255 bn in 2017. That’s a very healthy growth rate.

As the eLearning market continues to grow from strength to strength, it’s only natural that eLearning evolves too. Here are our predictions about the upcoming trends in this industry. While there is possibly some overlap between a few of them, the growing importance of each calls for a separate acknowledgement.

  1. eLearning On Tablets and mEnablement

From ‘just another type of PC’ to ‘an interesting media consumption device’, tablets have come a long way in a short time. Overall, the tablet market is showing exponential growth with tablet sales touted to overtake that of notebook PCs with an estimated volume of 240 million units sold worldwide by end of 2013 (by Tech-Thoughts). In the enterprises too, the usage of tablets for business related activities and enterprise mobility is on the rise, making eLearning on tablets almost a necessity.

As we mentioned in The Question Of Why (Not) eLearning On iPads Or Tablets?, while eLearning on tablets is not ‘real’ mLearning, it serves as a bridge to Mobile Learning. This has given birth to another trend most commonly found in organizations these days – mEnablement. mEnablement is the conversion of existing (legacy) eLearning courseware into a tablet compatible format. Know How To mEnable Your eLearning.

  1. Pervasive Learning and Embedded Ubiquitous Learning

‘Pervasive Learning’, as described by Dan Pontefract, is learning at the speed of need through formal, informal and social learning modalities. The idea of pervasive learning makes perfect sense as more and more of us become concept workers, and work and learning merge. This is further driven by the emerging technology, which is helping pervasive learning to happen more effectively and will continue to impact positively.

In line with this is the ‘embedded ubiquitous’ approach, where learning is embedded with the work, and is provided just at the time of task execution, just enough to accomplish the task at hand. Mobile devices and technology are the first wave in technology that supports this type of learning; it only gets better from here.

  1. Responsive/ Multi-Device Learning

We live in a multi-device world. Almost each one of us today uses a smart phone and a laptop (and that’s just the bare minimum requirement!) and other such devices that can support learning. For training administrators, this means developing and delivering learning solutions that work seamlessly across all devices – irrespective of their sizes, shapes, resolutions or OSs. The answer to this is ‘responsive eLearning’.

Responsive eLearning design, simply put, is used to “provide an optimal viewing experience – easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling – across a wide range of devices”.  But while responsive design provides device/display specific structuring of the content, it is important to ensure the relevance, type and context of the content, and more importantly the ‘point of use’ and access.

  1. Wearable Computing Technology in Learning

Wearable computing devices and associated technology, though still a novel concept, have been around for a while. Right now, most of these devices seem to be tethered to a phone or other mobile device, but as miniaturization continues this tethering will no longer be required. There are three main reasons it cannot be ignored for learning:

  • ‘Real Sharing’ – (life streaming becomes real, searchable, sharable streams of data BIG data becomes real)
  • The Provision of context
  • Natural Progression from mobile phones
  1. HTML 5

HTML 5 was hot when it came into focus and till this day remains to be one of the hottest trends to have hit the eLearning industry. So while Flash vs. HTML5 was a point of debate earlier, it’s not anymore. For any web-based mLearning, HTML5 is the future of mobile web, even if it’s not ready to the extent we believe it to be.

Speaking of authoring tools, most tools, today, actually struggle to provide real HTML5 compatibility. Several of them actually just embed non-interactive videos in HTML code. Good quality animations and interactivities are still missing. The tools are expected to become more capable in exploiting the potential of HTML5 in the future. Of the tools available out there, Lectora, Articulate Storyline and Adobe Captivate seems to be the most promising. Some of these also provide options to publish as Flash or HTML5 or as an app. Here’s a compilation of 15 Authoring Tools For mEnabling Your eLearning For iPads.

  1. Tin Can API

We had rendered our first impressions of the Tin Can API some time back. That this API promises to address many of the shortcomings associated with the existing SCORM standards, that are now over a decade old, is a given. But what remains to be seen is how it will affect the LMS as we know it and how soon?

Very soon, if you ask us; although the actual adoption may take some time. It’s true that getting a standard off the ground is a huge challenge, but Tin Can API, with its ability to collect data about the varied experiences an individual has had, both online and offline, capture them in a consistent format and record them in detail, has the power to move more quickly than other standards for a number of reasons.

  1. Gamification In Learning

‘Gamification in learning’ means attempting to apply the principles that make individuals play games for hours at end. Properly implemented, gamification has the potential to make learning ‘stickier’, increase uptake of learning content and also provide a more comprehensive record of learning than is possible using conventional measures in courses.

As millennials continue to enter the workplace at an increasing rate, gamification in learning can be used by leveraging the mindset of these young individuals who look for ways to be acknowledged for their accomplishments by their peers by making use of social connections/ media. As in a game, where there are reward points for displaying the player status, in a learning context too, the same mechanism/ strategy can be used.

  1. Informal Learning

Majority of learning in the modern context happens naturally and at most times is embedded in other tasks – contextually and subconsciously, and is always self-initiated. While you cannot ‘create & implement’ informal learning, you can at best support it by providing an environment, which breeds informal learning. Part of that environment will be the culture of your organization and that’s not something any vendor, technology, or tool can do for you. Mobile with its several unique characteristics of being always on, always carried, and a host of sensors in it, could be the ideal enabling technology to begin with and offers a transformational opportunity if pursued properly as discussed in one of our previous posts Mobile Enables Informal Learning.

  1. Videos In eLearning

In early stages of eLearning, video was used by most organizations for training, which later sizzled with the emergence of web and its associated limitation on bandwidth utilization. Fifteen years later, videos are all set to return to eLearning in a big way. And here’s why.

  • They provide engagement
  • They act as on demand Performance Support tools just when your staff needs them
  • They provide an opportunity to bridge the gap between different screen sizes and multiple platforms
  • Since they ‘show’ pictures and can include subtitles, they can act as Cross Language tools for learning
  • The cost of video production is low
  • They tends to be more viral that other assets
  • Employees can record events, processes, problems – just about anything they wish to share creating User Generated Videos

In line with videos is a similar asset which will hold its own place in delivering learning to individuals – Television. In fact, its presence has already been felt with the emergence of products like Apple TV and Google TV, which connect to conventional television sources and the Internet to dish up an interactive experience as opposed to the experience provided by a regular one-way TV. Apart from being made use of for entertainment, TV coupled with video has already been used for learning initiatives in a big manner.Perhaps in a decade from now on, the TV would be completely different from what we know of it today. We had spoken about this in TV In The Future Of Learning. In fact, with the APIs and tools for creating applications for TV fast emerging, it now depends on us as to how we, as learning designers, make the most of it.

  1. Algorithmically Generated Content In Learning

Algorithmic generation of content has existed for a while now, most commonly used in games to generate content used to populate the game environment. So how long before we have algorithms that are setup to create ‘learning material’ by constantly monitoring streams of user generated content, monitoring individual context? Not too far.

The first inklings of this are already visible, in the form of search, discovery and sharing services such as Scoop.it and Summify and a whole lot more. The algorithms the services use don’t really create the content, but that will change soon. We will have algorithms that actually glean information from various streams and write content.

Courtesy : http://www.upsidelearning.com

How to Take Control of Your Business Online Reputation

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Potential customers are increasingly turning to dozens of review websites to view others’ opinions before trying a new product or service. According to two recent Nielsen studies, 85 percent of consumers polled go online for information and reviews about local businesses, and 70 percent of consumers said they trusted online reviews. 

We spoke with Michael Fertik, founder and CEO of Silicon Valley-based online reputation management company Reputation.com, to find out how business owners can take control of their online reputation today.

 

1. Ask customers for an honest review.
If a business has been around for several years, it’s doing something right, as evidenced by repeat customers, Fertik says. “Collect real tips from real customers,” Fertik suggests. Don’t pay for reviews (that’s unethical), but make it as easy as possible for customers to review your business. Have a laptop available near the register and ask customers if they’d mind writing a quick review about their experience.

2. Don’t obsess over social media – unless, of course, you want to.
Most businesses don’t need to spend a lot of time on Facebook and Twitter, Fertik says. If you run a cupcake shop, Facebook makes sense because you can list flavors of the day and the product is something people want to talk about. If you own a tree cutting business, Facebook doesn’t do as much for you, Fertik notes.

Related: When Bad Online Reviews Cost Business

At minimum, Fertik suggests business owners set up Twitter and Facebook pages with their business’ logo and contact information, and treat them as digital business cards. If you do want to engage in social media, don’t worry about constantly promoting your business on your Facebook page or Twitter feed. “Include information about the industry or articles of interest to customers; you want to keep the conversation going, [but you] don’t have to promote, promote, promote,” Fertik says.

3. Think before you respond to hostile criticism.
“Be very careful before you respond to a hostile critic [on a review site],” Fertik warns. You may not want to respond at all. “If you respond, respond only if they’re getting a specific set of facts wrong.” It can be hard to resist responding to negative feedback, so before deciding what to do, take a breather. Fertik says the best course of action is to ask customers for honest feedback and get them to review your business over a period of time.

4. Set up Google Alerts.
Small businesses can benefit from setting up Google Alerts, Fertik says. Google Alerts are free e-mail updates sent to your inbox any time your search terms are mentioned on Google. Fertik suggests setting alerts for your name, your business’ name, and any way people know your business. For example, if your name contains common search terms like “Bob’s Best Towing,” add the location to narrow your results so only the most relevant ones appear

Courtesy : entrepreneur