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Five questions...for Elliott Masie

By Lisa Neal / March 2007

TYPE: INTERVIEW
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Elliott Masie is one of the best-known figures in the e-learning field, running his own conferences and keynoting at many others. He heads the MASIE Center, an upstate New York think tank on organizational support for learning and knowledge, and leads the Learning Consortium, a coalition of over 230 Fortune 500 companies focusing on learning strategies.

Lisa Neal: How is the popularity of social networking sites impacting e-learning?

Elliott Masie: Actually, it is more informal and covert than obvious. Most organizations are still testing the water for how they will enable social networking in an age of compliance and litigation. We are seeing a lot of interest in peer-based ratings for content, however, and it is impacting the use of on-line books and other informal reading stuff.

LN: How has e-learning been impacted by Web 2.0 and what do you think the future (Web 3.0) will bring?

EM: The impact is in the change in content preferences. People want content that is shorter, more focused, less formal, and more actionable. We will also see significant changes in the ways in which LMS and other learning systems may be leveraged and upgraded.

LN: What is the most interesting job someone in the e-learning field can hold?

EM: Learning Feeds and Community Facilitator.

LN: What is the most interesting e-learning course or program you have come across recently?

EM: I saw a collaborative course run by folks that were being laid off from a large manufacturing company. They built a community of content and support for themselves.

LN: With the so-called flattening of the world, what do you see as the role of culture in e-learning?

EM: Democratization of content is driving (and is required by) a world that is changing faster than matching curriculum can be developed, and with more differentiation than can fit into a traditionally authored course. Also, context is pushing against content as the king or queen of learning.



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