• Jul 22
    2013
    Contrast, repetition, alignment, and proximity are the fundamental principles of screen design. You can use their first initials to create a mnemonic that is unfortunately ugly but easy to remember. I’ll give you a minute to work it out. I’d rather not use the word. What, if anything, does it have to do with eLearning? Screen design is critical to application training, because most of application training is interface training. ...
  • Jul 15
    2013
    I was thinking about business training course development recently when a friend told me about his experience of working in a doctoral program in history at an American university in the 1970s. His program required completing a year’s worth of history seminars as well as gaining reading competence in two foreign languages. But these requirements were just a warmup for the main event: the preliminary examination. The preliminary examination, or ...
  • Jul 08
    2013
    In a previous post on training course development, I described the nine steps of the learning process and said “the training developer has to plan how the learner will be brought through each of the nine steps for each learning objective.” In this post, I want to tell you a little about how we write learning objectives. There’s a method for doing it. and if you don’t follow the method, ...
  • Jul 01
    2013
    Dictionary.com offers three definitions for “climate,” and when I use the word in the title of this post, I mean the third one: “the prevailing attitudes, standards, or environmental conditions of a group, period, or place: a climate of political unrest.” Even the best-crafted training solutions are likely to be less effective if they are implemented without any regard for the learning climate of your organization. Several weeks ago, I ...
  • Jun 17
    2013
    I can’t think about online learning without remembering the remarks of Andrew McAfee at his TED talk this year: “I was a Montessori kid for the first few years of my education, and what that education taught me is that the world is an interesting place and my job is to go explore it. The school stopped in third grade, so then I entered the public school system, and it ...
  • Jun 10
    2013
    Does direct marketing have anything to teach us about developing online learning content? It just might. Direct marketing is in the business of influencing human behavior, and over generations its practitioners have gathered considerable information about motivation. One of the tools they use to gather this information is a process called A/B testing. In A/B testing, the marketer offers two versions of a message to virtually identical audiences and measures ...
  • Jun 03
    2013
    In the field of training course development, the late Robert M. Gagné who died in 2002, is a very well known expert: his influence is still vibrant and pervasive in the field. He was an educational psychologist who studied the learning process, particularly how it relates to job training. In the Second World War, he worked with the U.S. Army Air Corps to train pilots and went from there to ...
  • May 27
    2013
    I've written before about the process of establishing a learner community in the virtual classroom. That is one issue among many you encounter when you shift from face-to-face learning to virtual classroom learning. In this post, I want to discuss how to keep learners engaged throughout the training session in the virtual classroom. When you’re teaching in person, you have many cues that allow you to create a group conversation. ...