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Best Practices/Tips

Finding Your Niche During the MOOC Revolution

By Donna Gardner Liljegren, Lisa Trombetta / December 5, 2014

Elmhurst College, a small, four-year, liberal arts college, identified its niche and used partnerships to develop and market a successful MOOC promoting its programs in geospatial science. The authors explain how the same process may help you to identify and launch MOOCs to a niche audience. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Digital Literacy, Lifelong Learning, News and Trends


Online Learning and the Doctorate

By Alison Carr-Chellman / December 2, 2014

As the popularity of online doctoral programs grows, its vital for learners to have an accurate picture of the professional opportunities that await them within industry and academia. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning, News and Trends

Research/Case Studies

The Development of Online Distance Education in Saudi Arabia

By Uthman T. Alturki / November 25, 2014

Today we live in the era of the knowledge revolution, which accelerates scientific discoveries, technological developments, and the spread of knowledge. Perhaps one of the most rapid technological developments is what is happening in the field of communication technology, the Internet, and distance education. These developments have affected all aspects of life and pose new challenges in all areas especially in the field of education. » [Full Article]

Best Practices/Tips

Three Questions to Ask Before You Embark on Gamification

By Yi Yang / November 21, 2014

What's the difference between game-based learning and gamification? When shall I use game-based learning and when shall I use gamification? Many instructional designers and instructors struggle in differentiating those two terms and debate on which learning strategy to choose. The article will reveal the answers to these questions and posit three questions for instructional designers and instructors to consider to help them make the decision. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development, Games and Simulations

Best Practices/Tips

Creating Instruction for Ubiquitous Learners: Three paradigm shifts that are changing the foundations of instructional design

By Timothy Stafford / November 21, 2014

Learning is shifting, but in many ways it is the foundations of learning that are having the most profound effect on contemporary instructional designers. Defining social media, digital literacy and learning, knowing, and expertise are only the tip of the iceberg for the future of learning within digital environments. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development

Best Practices/Tips

From MOOCs to Learning Analytics: Scratching the surface of the 'visual'

By Jeremy Knox / November 13, 2014

The visualization of big MOOC data enables us to see trends in student behaviors and activities around the globe, but what is it that we are not seeing? » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends, Program Evaluation


The Significance of Educational Technology History and Research

By George Veletsianos / November 11, 2014

What impacts learning are changes in instructional design and pedagogical practices supported by the introduction of new technologies, not the technology itself. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Delivery Technology


An Interview with Dr. Rouel Belleza

By Joe Cozart / October 31, 2014

Cherokee County is a suburban school district northwest of Atlanta, GA. In the last several years, the district has seen an explosion of interest in online learning. The district is attempting to leverage digital resources in a way that can enable growth of blended learning district wide as well. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Blended Learning

Best Practices/Tips

The Importance of Setting the Stage

By Glenn Johnson, James L. Rosenberger, Mosuk Chow / October 1, 2014

The motivation for engaging in peer review of teaching vacillates between providing opportunities to improve teaching and evaluating teaching performance. We strive to find ways to maximize the benefits of peer review of teaching because this activity provides a valuable opportunity for peer collaboration and curricular coordination within a program. This article discusses a range of strategies that we have used to engage online instructors in thinking critically about the quality of their online instruction; we show how these strategies help set the stage for maximizing the benefits that a well structured peer review of online teaching can provide. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Program Evaluation

Best Practices/Tips

Training Online Teachers Through A Badge Driven Course

By Joe Cozart / September 30, 2014

The Georgia Virtual School is a supplemental online school that employs more than 200 teachers. Due to growth and attrition new teachers must continually be hired, which created a large burden for the school. The problem was addressed through the creation of an open online course driven by badge credentialing. Interested teachers now complete this training course prior to the hiring process. This ensures job applicants have a basic knowledge of online learning and a better understanding of the requirements to teach online, thus decreasing attrition in the first year. Course participants go through five modules and earn a badge after successfully demonstrating an understanding of the material in the respective module. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Digital Literacy, Lifelong Learning

Best Practices/Tips

eLearning and Higher Education in Pakistan: What may hamper it

By Abida Ellahi, Bilal Zaka / September 23, 2014

As part of higher education, universities have been increasing their efforts to promote learning growth and innovation. In Pakistan private and public institutions of higher educations have undertaken eLearning initiatives. This article draws from the research literature and a preliminary descriptive study to describe the current status of eLearning systems in a few universities within Pakistan, and discusses the challenges faced in implementing eLearning projects in Pakistan. In order to play an important role in democratizing education and contributing toward creating knowledge workers, higher education needs to play a more active role in promoting and supporting eLearning initiatives. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Digital Literacy

Best Practices/Tips

A Balancing Act Part III: Technical support on the front lines of modern-day online education

By Jennifer A. Shamsy / September 12, 2014

Though a team approach is desired, many online instructors/trainers still fulfill an informally defined and delegated technical support role at least in part when time and skills allow. As we look to the future, there will be an increase in technical support demands further emphasizing the need for a comprehensive team approach to technical support. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends, Program Evaluation


Revolutionize Learning and Development; An e-Learning Manifesto for All of Us

By Stevie Rocco / September 10, 2014

Clark Quinn's new book, "Revolutionize Learning and Development," offers many insights and suggestions for the changes that are needed for learning and performance in organizations going forward. From the need for data to how we conceive of a course, the text outlines next steps that organizations can take to optimize performance. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning, Theories and Principles

Why Employers Can't Ignore Onboarding with Tech

By Andrew Fayad / September 3, 2014

The traditional onboarding process for new hires is broken, and with today's technology, theres no excuse for saying: "That's the best we can do." » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning


You Think You Know Online Learners? Think Again

By Jill Cross / August 28, 2014

Online learning is a dynamically evolving practice, and many companies operate under outdated assumptions about their audience. InReach, a continuing education solution provider, recently conducted a survey to uncover the wants and preferences of online learners. The findings, which are shared within, can help identify the key factors that make up a successful online program. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends


Where the Boys Are: Understanding online learning and gender

By Alison Carr-Chellman / August 20, 2014

This opinion piece explores the nature of the learners in elearning environments with a special focus on gender. Unexpectedly, more girls than boys are enrolling in all levels of online learning and the implications for elearning professionals are explored here. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends

Best Practices/Tips

Attitude Plus Aptitude Will Determine Altitude

By Brooke Bennett / July 31, 2014

Online learning offers many advantages. However the expanding use of technology does not come without challenges. As educators, we are forever trying to find ways to motivate students in our online classrooms. Are there specific tactics and activities that could help enhance student motivation? It is shown that through our behaviors, such as consistent feedback and prompt responses, we can create an environment that encourages and motivates students while enhancing student engagement and participation. » [Full Article]


eLearn COIL Podcast

By Alison Carr-Chellman / July 28, 2014

In a first for eLearn Magazine, EIC Alison Carr-Chelmann leads off a podcast exploring the Center for Online Innovation in Learning housed at Penn State University. Drs. Kyle Peck and Larry Ragan, co founders and co-directors of the center talk about the advantages of having a true R&D center on campus. » [Full Article]


A Balancing Act Part II: Providing technical support before, during and after the online course

By Jennifer A. Shamsy / July 25, 2014

As one of many roles of online instructors, effective technical support can be achieved by engaging in proactive steps before, during, and after the course or training program. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Program Evaluation


Online and Distance Education Demands Researchers Pick a Topic and Get to Work

By Nakita Dolet / July 24, 2014

Online and distance educations continues to grow as a field, attracting students and educators from various disciplines and cultural backgrounds. Despite, a growing interest in online education, many argue there is a need for deliberate, well-informed research that helps in the continued development of the field. "Online Distance Education: Towards a Research Agenda," edited by Olaf Zawacki-Richter and Terry Anderson, attempts to bring a renewed energy to online and distance education (ODEL) research by inviting a number of experts to discuss issues impacting this sector of education today. » [Full Article]


Getting Going with mLearning: A recap of mLearnCon 2014

By Clark Quinn / July 11, 2014

The latest mLearn Conference was a chance to assess the current state of the mobile industry. The core message was that mobile has matured, and there are real opportunities to be had. The cutting edge, however, is still a dynamic area of exploration with content architectures at the back end and wearables at the front end both are driving much excitement. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Mobile Learning

Best Practices/Tips, Reviews

Design for Online Learning Using a Learner's Perspective Approach

By Simone C. O. Conceição / July 2, 2014

A variety of instructional design models provide pathways for developing courses using different philosophical approaches. However, many design models tend to focus more on the teaching than on the learning portion of the process. Roderick Sims, in his book "Design Alchemy: Transforming the Way We Think About Learning and Teaching," provides an innovative approach to design online instruction that focuses primarily on the learning rather than the teacher or content. He uses the term "design alchemy" to explain how a designer can think about learning and teaching as a practical and effective means to creative online environments that maximize the educational experience. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development

Best Practices/Tips

Evaluating Interactive Learning Content in an eLearning Environment

By Khalil Ajami, Maher Suleiman / June 30, 2014

The interaction between teacher and learner, as well as the interaction between learner and content, has a significant impact on the effectiveness of any learning process. In this paper, we discuss interactivity in the context of eLearning and we focus on the interaction between the learner and the content. The objective is to provide clear metrics to measure learner-content interactivity from the design perspective and at the level of learning objects. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Program Evaluation


Alarmingly Shallow: The effects of Internet on our culture, community, and social well being

By David Seckman / June 20, 2014

In "The Shallows. What the Internet is doing to our Brains," Nicholas Carr investigates the various ways technology is becoming both enlightening and disturbingly influential in the learning, neurological, and decision-making ethos of the human race. He offers insights into side effects of the Internet on our ability to focus and think critically about the things we read, see, and discuss. This review challenges the notion that historical effects of the book and the Internet are disparate in nature, and argues for a more balanced approach to the way we view technology fitting into society and learning as we continue to change over time. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends


The Revolution in Higher Education and the Needs of the New Academic

By Alison Carr-Chellman / June 9, 2014

This new e-Lead from the editor's desk is an introspective look at what eLearning means to the daily rituals of the ivory tower, and the impact eLearning is having on academic life today. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning, News and Trends


Scaffolding Collaboration: An interview with Chen Wenli

By Ryan Tracey / June 5, 2014

In the Singaporean culture where individuals do not automatically act as a group, a structured process is promoting collaborative learning and critical thinking. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning, Mobile Learning

Research/Case Studies

An Engaged and Engaging Mobile Learning Ecosystem

By Cathy Cavanaugh, Jace Hargis / May 30, 2014

This synthesis interprets findings from research efforts conducted during the first six months of a college mobile education program to provide insights into key program features and outcomes. In so doing, it classifies the findings in five themes: Engaging Technology, specifically iPads as cognitive tool-boxes for learning; Engaged Pedagogy consisting of student-centered teaching practice; Engaged Faculty interpreted through their perceptions and uses of the tools and ecosystem; Engaged Community of Learners who are creating teaching and learning media with the tools; and Engaging Learning Ecosystem where learning time and space expands. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Mobile Learning

Best Practices/Tips

A Balancing Act Part I: Technical Support and the Online Instructor

By Jennifer Shamsy / May 30, 2014

Technical issues can create a barrier to fully accessing and engaging in online classrooms. The need to support learners in overcoming these barriers may be addressed through a team approach or by individual instructors/trainers taking on the technical support role. While this role may not always be clearly defined or formally delegated, assuming the role of technical support in an online classroom has both benefits and drawbacks. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Digital Literacy, Program Evaluation

Raising the Bar: An interview with Carol Russell

By Ryan Tracey / May 20, 2014

College students are tech savvy, and they want to use their mobile devices to enhance their learning experience. How should institutions and instructors respond? Dr. Carol Russell of the University of Western Sydney (UWS) in Australia has some thoughts and her answers may surprise you. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Blended Learning, Mobile Learning

Research/Case Studies

Essential Knowledge Aggregation, Delivery, and Assessment

By Igor Schagaev, Brian Kirk, Liz Bacon / May 7, 2014

It is clear that the use of ICT for education has not yet achieved its potential. In this paper we present our vision on the further development and widening of learning through the enhanced use of ICT. In this context, learning is considered as having a framework with several essential and connected processes. Web semantic methods now enable the monitoring of knowledge and curriculum updates. Substantial research is required, as well as an understanding of how the human brain manages various channels of information delivery. We consider knowledge delivery in combination with textual, visual, and audio information. Its efficiency can be improved when we discover and apply methods used for successful performances and plays. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development, Theories and Principles

Best Practices/Tips

Putting the Classroom in the Cloud with Virtual Desktops and Bring-Your-Own-Device

By Shawn Mills / April 30, 2014

IT departments in educational environments must constantly balance expenses while implementing new technology to engage learners and empower instructors. Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is one method IT administrators can implement for simplified computer lab management, increased security measures, and to allow students and teachers to work with their mobile devices. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Mobile Learning, News and Trends

Best Practices/Tips

Speaking Your Mind: Using elements of narrative storytelling in eLearning

By Chris Jennings / April 29, 2014

To compensate for the lack of human presence in online courses, consider adding narrative story elements to your eLearning that situates the learner in immersive, real-world scenarios. Framing learning in the context of relatable stories can add tremendous value and enjoyment to students instruction. Employ an appropriate course voice that attracts users to the content, inviting them to explore, rather than overwhelming them with information. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development


Managing in Complexity: A book review of Flat Army

By Clark Quinn / April 22, 2014

Dan Pontefract's "Flat Army" lays out how to manage people in an organization in ways that jointly maximize the employee engagement and the organizational outcomes. If making work more meaningful and empowering employees is the wave of the future, the old ways wont work. This book lays out how to act, lead, and decide in the new organization. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Theories and Principles


Outside the LMS Box: An interview with Ashley Tan

By Ryan Tracey / April 10, 2014

Dr. Ashley Tan leads the Centre for e-Learning at Singapore's National Institute of Education, which is the only institute in the country responsible for preteacher education. In this interview, Dr. Tan discusses the movement of instructors away from the institutional LMS toward open social platforms. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Learning Platforms, Lifelong Learning

Best Practices/Tips

Developing Engaging Content

By Randhir Vieira / March 20, 2014

Companies need training that is not only flexible and affordable, but can be deployed and consumed quickly. Enter eLearning. Trainers have the dual challenge of helping employees meet compliance or other industry requirements and respond to changing customer needs. These pressures mean trainers must create new online courses on the fly while ensuring the content is easily consumable to reinforce rapid learning. By using existing material and frequently measuring feedback, among other ideas, you can transform your online training program into a highly efficient machine for learning and competing. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning


A Look at Web-based Instruction Today

By Ann Taylor / March 12, 2014

In part two of our interview with Badrul Khan, Ann Taylor and Badrul examine Web-based instruction in relation to Khan's "Framework for e-Learning." They also discuss Badrul's interviews with visionaries leading the way in technology-based education, and he shares advice for those just entering the Web-based instruction realm. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Theories and Principles


Getting Smart About Content

By Clark Quinn / March 7, 2014

eLearning is behind the industry when it comes to dealing with content systematically. The Intelligent Content Conference presents a chance to understand what leading organizations are recommending and doing with content. The practices observed include design, engineering, and management of content in ways enlightened by new standards and tools that provide a multi-layer approach to customizing the user experience. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends

Best Practices/Tips, Interviews

A Look at Web-based Instruction Today: An interview with Badrul Khan, Part 1

By Ann Taylor / February 28, 2014

In the first of this two-part series, Ann Taylor and Badrul Khan discuss how Web-based instruction has grown since its inception and explore the particular case of MOOCs. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Theories and Principles

Best Practices/Tips

Using Game Mechanics to Enhance Leadership Education

By Zack Bodnar / February 24, 2014

Gamification has significant advantages for incentivizing learning and professional training as a complement to traditional learning management systems. This article highlights how the Deloitte Leadership Academy introduced game mechanics into its executive training program using Badgeville's Behavior Platform to leverage the same intrinsic motivators--namely peer recognition and a bit of friendly competition--to spur participation and convince busy executives to invest their valuable time to fully engage with the program. With the addition of gamification to their online learning system, Deloitte saw a 46 percent increase in student retention and significant improvements in course completion time. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Games and Simulations, Lifelong Learning


The Fundamentals for Successful Program Design

By Susan Knight / February 14, 2014

In the second edition of E-Learning by Design, William Horton provides a comprehensive, engaging, and practical guide for designing eLearning programs confidently and effectively. Horton explains what to do, the rationale behind it, and the benefit to learners. Readers will find a wealth of information, based on sound instructional design principles, which can be applied to any eLearning project. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Theories and Principles

Best Practices/Tips

Getting Out from Under the Contract: The risk of over relying on third parties for eLearning

By Chris Jennings / February 10, 2014

eLearning requires a specific set of development skills and specialized technologies to support learning goals and program needs. To offer a dynamic program that evolves to meet the needs of users, try to use internal talent and systems that allow you to control as much of the content creation and supporting technologies as possible. This will create a program independent of third parties and keep your program relevant for years to come. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Design and Development


The Agony or the Empathy? An interview with Anne Bartlett-Bragg

By Ryan Tracey / February 5, 2014

Anne Bartlett-Bragg holds a unique space in eLearning as both a researcher and a practitioner. In this interview, Anne discusses the importance of immersion. By empathizing with the learner, one can truly design the best solution. » [Full Article]


Bridging the Gap: The Role of Ongoing Training and Coaching

By Kurt Andersen / January 31, 2014

Did you know there is a major gap in the sales training process? This article shares the results of a survey that explores the gap, analyzes why it exists, and proposes strategic methods for addressing this issue. » [Full Article]
TAGS: Lifelong Learning


eLearn Enters a New Era

By Alison Carr-Chellman / January 29, 2014

eLearn Magazine is entering a new era and will look and feel rather different in the coming months. The editor-in-chief shares a preview of what is new and what is coming. » [Full Article]
TAGS: News and Trends