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DevLearn 2010 Conference Wrap
20 Take-Aways from DevLearn Sessions, Keynotes, and Thought Leaders

By Jill Duffy / November 2011

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DevLearn 2010 Conference Wrap

20 Take-Aways from DevLearn Sessions, Keynotes, and Thought Leaders

November 11, 2010

DevLearn 10, a U.S.-based e-learning conference put on by eLearning Guild, took place November 3-5 in San Francisco.

While a multitude of blog posts (including Laura Dickson's), web sites (such as Learning Solutions magazine), and Twitter messages using the tag dl10 have given various snapshots of the event, eLearn Magazine brings you this review of the coverage: 20 take-away ideas from the sessions and keynote speeches.

Keynote Talks

1. Embracing change, even on a moment to moment basis, as in when searching for an immediate answer or solution through all our connected channels, is what will equip people and businesses to not necessarily keep pace with technology, but at least fluctuate with it. — From "The Power of Pull" keynote speech by John Seely Brown, co-founder of Deliotte Center for Edge Innovation.

2. "Social learning is participating with others to make sense of new ideas," said Conner in her speech, and in that light, social learning sounds pretty much like good old fashioned communication and teamwork-only now it's typically facilitated by technology. —From "The New Social Learning" keynote speech by Marcia Conner, partner at Altimeter Group.

3. The only thing that will become obsolete is ignorance; we are no longer allowed not to know. —From "The New Know: Innovation Powered by Analytics" keynote speech by Thornton May, executive director, IT Leadership Academy.

4. Play, socialization, work, learning, creativity, exploration, training, competition, and feeling engaged are not things that work best in silos; they can all be part of the same thing. —"Total Engagement: Using Games and Virtual Worlds to Change the Way People Work and Learn" keynote speech by Byron Reeves, professor at Stanford University.

Wrap Session

In the last session of the DevLearn 10 conference "New Perspectives in Learning: Six Views from Six Thought Leaders," six leaders in the e-learning community gathered on stage and took turns giving brief talks that addressed one major theme that's central to the present and future of e-learning.

5. Being an e-learning professional requires the ability to move between various communities, such as the pedagogists, the technologists, the creative designers — or better yet, belong to more than one group at once. —Cammy Bean, vice president of Learning Design at Kineo.

6. Games, when designed well, can achieve an ideal state for learning (Vygotsky's zone of proximal development) that puts new knowledge and skills just beyond the reach of the learner, while still evoking enough sense of engagement, ownership, and enjoyment to keep the learner reaching for that which is beyond his or her reach. —Richard Culatta, educational innovator at Central Intelligence Agency.

7. Although some feel washed naked by the wave of data upon us, e-learning professionals are often among the experts who know how to manage what they accept from the flow; and in the very near future the data that filters through to them will inform real decision-making in new ways. —Ellen Wagner, principal analyst at Sage Road Solutions, LLC.

8. It's easy for newcomers to social media tools to see only the content that's cheap, shallow, and mindless, but the gap between seeing only the fluff and finding deep and meaningful content is very small and very easy to bridge with a little help. —Jane Bozarth, author of Creating Engaging e-Learning with PowerPoint.

9. Video is inexpensive and provides an immediate way for people to share knowledge or promote understanding in businesses, schools, and the world. —Gina Schreck, president and digital immigration officer at Synapse 3Di, LLC.

10. Connecting with others and sharing information heightens both learning and productivity. —Aaron Silvers, community manager at ADL.


11. "You would never pay a sports coach for training that's not directive," and yet that's what business does all the time with its training, says Martin L. Cohen. —From "The Difference Between eLearning (Know) and ePerformance (D0)" session by Martin L. Cohen of Breakthrough Performance Technology

12. The fact that formal learning doesn't work anymore has less to do with the format, content, and delivery of formal learning, and much more to do with the fact that the whole system for how people communicate and swap information is drastically different now compared to what it was even a few years ago. —From "The State of Learning in the Workplace Today" session by Jane Hart of the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies and a member of the Internet Time Alliance.

13. Podcasting can be a wonderful component of an e-learning solution, but it requires real committment: delivering consistently styled audio files according to a predefined schedule that is apparent to the listeners. —From "Making an Audio Podcast Part of Your e-Learning Strategy" session by Rick Nielsen of and


14. "I truly believe that when people talk to one another, business gets done."Clark Quinn, learning experience design strategist and eLearn Magazine advisory board member, on social media tools in businesses.

15. "When learning is the work, then it has to be integrated with working." —Harold Jarche, helping to answer an audience question during Jane Hart's session on workplace training.

Thoughtful Tweets

16. People that are helpful in communities are more likely to get help back. @tomkuhlmann #dl10 #dl10s710 Steve Nguyen, on Tom Kuhlman's session "Virtual Villages: Cultivating a Shared Practice Community."

17. If you want to find out what it is you dont know that you dont know, you need to hang out with other people who might already know it #dl10 Sumeet Moghe

18. "#dl10 situational learning= mobile, contextual, connected, agile" KoreenOlbrish, CEO of Tandem Learning.

19. "Next buttons are products of an evil empire. Think non-linear design in elearning #dl10"Terrence Wing, on Richard Culatta's insistence that on-screen "next" buttons forces learners to take in material linearly.

20. "A lot of existing formal learning practices are ineffective and inefficient. Most formal learning is content-heavy and interaction-poor, provides little opportunity for practice in context and for reflection. In other words, a large amount of formal learning is a cost rather than a benefit."Charles Jennings, as quoted by Jane Hart in the session "The State of Learning int he Workplace Today."

Access to Slides and Other Presentation Materials from DevLearn 10
Official List of Handouts from eLearning Guild
Slides: Games for Learning, by Richard Culatta
Slides: Intro to Compressing Audio and Video AND Best Practices for Working with Video in Learning, by Nick Florio
Slides: The State of Learning in the Workplace Today, by Jane Hart
PDF: Mining the Value of Microsharing, by Steve Nguyen
Slides: 25+ mLearning Tools in 60 Minutes, by B. J. Schone
Slides: Design Thinking + Democracy, by Aaron Silvers

To have your slides added to the list, please email senior editor Jill Duffy: jill(dot)duffy@hq(dot)acm(dot)org.


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