Entries by yuehchin

Delivering Training with Virtual Classrooms

What is a virtual classroom? A virtual classroom is a digital teaching and learning environment in which participants can interact with learning resources and with one another like they can in a traditional classroom. The keywords here are, of course, virtual and classroom. In a virtual setting, face-to-face activities such as presentations and discussions that are traditionally done in a physical classroom are simulated with web conferencing technology. Communications take place in real time just like in a physical classroom. How do virtual classrooms work? As a technology, virtual classrooms are not as foreign a concept as you might think. They are often built on (or share many similar features with) web conferencing technologies that are used to run virtual meetings. Like web conferencing software, in a virtual classroom: There can be one or more hosts, presenters, moderators, and participants You can participate by video, audio or both You can use text chats to communicate with other participants The presenter can show their presentation or share their screen To turn web conferencing into a virtual classroom, additional technologies like the following are often used: Break-out rooms for group discussions/activities A live whiteboard for real-time collaboration Indication of participant status (which changes […]

To Quiz or Not to Quiz?

Having gone through years of schooling, most of us are used to taking and passing tests during or at the end of our learning process. Some of these tests are major milestones and others may determine whether our learning is deemed ‘completed’ or ‘successful’. Some teachers may find constructing and administering tests more straight forward than developing other types of assessment. Often these tests get created at the end of a course development process, driven by the subject matter rather than by expected performance outcomes. For workplace learning or soft skills training in which application is more important than memorizing facts, tests may not be the most appropriate assessment method. Most test questions are not designed to allow students to engage in critical thinking and reflection or a deeper analysis of the learning material. There are alternatives to tests, such as writing assignments, collaborative projects, and case studies, that can avoid the problems often associated with tests and quizzes. The key is to design authentic assessments that simulate real-life situations so students can actually learn from the process (Palloff & Pratt, 2013)1. Although group projects can be harder to manage online, they allow your learners to create and be part of a community of practice. After all, if the application of skills doesn’t […]

What Is Tin Can? Should You Care?

What is Tin Can? The Tin Can API (also known as Experience API or xAPI) is a specification in learning technology that makes it possible to collect data about a wide range of learning activities. Similar to SCORM and AICC, the Tin Can API describes learning data in a consistent format so it is cross-platform compatible. This means different elearning authoring applications (such as Articulate Storyline and Adobe Captivate) and systems (such as a Learning Record Store) are able to capture and report on learning activities using  a consistent vocabulary. Why is Tin Can important? Although SCORM (and the legacy AICC) are still the predominant elearning standards supported by most Learning Management Systems (LMS), they came about in a different era when elearning activities were limited to what happened in a single LMS. In the real world, of course, learners move around, use different devices in different locations, and do much of their learning outside of an LMS. Tin Can was developed to address the need of learning beyond a single LMS. Mobile learning, simulations, games, and social learning are some of the things that can now be recognized and communicated well with the Tin Can API. Image source: What is the Tin Can API? How does the Tin Can API work? A Tin Can […]

Who Reads Learning Outcomes?

If you do a search online, you’ll find plenty of resources on how to write good learning outcomes, and how not to confuse learning outcomes with learning objectives. “Outcomes” or “objectives”, the reality is your learners seldom pay attention to them. They skip this screen. They fast forward. So for whom are learning outcomes really written? Don’t get me wrong. Learning outcomes are written for the learners. But they seem to be there as a reminder to the instructor and instructional designer of what the focus of the training should be, like how PowerPoint is often misused as the presenter’s teleprompter. So should you skip learning outcomes all together? Not at all. There are ways you can state learning outcomes that are informative and actually get your learners’ attention. Here are some strategies. 1. Pose learning outcomes as questions Rather than telling your learners what they should be able to do at the end of the lesson, consider asking them a series of open-ended questions for which they don’t yet have answers until they complete the lesson. These questions are intended to raise the learners’ curiosity and get them to want to learn more. 2. Use a pre-test to frame learning outcomes An alternative […]

7 Principles of Good Feedback in eLearning

Every  teacher knows that it’s important to provide students with regular feedback during their learning process. Without feedback, your learners simply don’t know how well they are doing. In self-paced online learning, how do you gauge the learners’ progress when there is no instructor to provide feedback and guide their learning? Nicol and Macfarlane‐Dick (2006)1 identified seven principles of good feedback practice. In this post, we’ll discuss how you can incorporate feedback—in particular, how to apply these principles—in self-paced online learning. Good feedback helps clarify what good performance is What’s been done: An approach that has proved particularly effective in clarifying performance goals and standards is to model exemplary performance. Without concrete, worked examples, concepts are just abstract ideas. In self-paced online learning, this can be achieved with case studies in which learners can identify good performance in the presented scenario. What you can do: When designing a case scenario, consider breaking it into multiple parts. After presenting a case, ask the learner what they would do in that scenario—this could be done with a multiple-choice question with possible reactions. Reveal the answer only after the learner has given it some thought. Your answer will be more meaningful if they interact with the […]