Online learning 101: Approaches

Reda Sadki Learning strategy

There are myriad approaches to online learning. I’ve selected three. One of them should no longer be recommended. This is the production of information modules that test information recall. In some cases, aware of the limited outcomes using this approach, attempts have been made to encourage reflection or analysis, but then the limitation of the approach leaves the learner with limited or no formative feedback and reductive forms of assessment. We need to stop producing these “click-click” modules, as they are teaching all of the wrong things, even if the subject matter content is spot on. They are purely transmissive, leaving the learner to passively consume information. They substitute multimedia bells and whistle for substance. Their only real usefulness, in the past, was to introduce people in the sector to “e-learning” as a digital version of transmissive trainings in which the slide deck is the pedagogy. The other two approaches, fortunately, …

Online learning 101 mindmap excerpt

Online learning 101: learning objectives and mind map

Reda Sadki Learning strategy

My LSi.io presentation on the foundational knowledge about online learning in the humanitarian context could provide fodder for… an online course. And here are some of the learning objectives that would be included in such a course, together with a mind map showing some of the items addressed by the presentation. Summarize the challenges of adapting to constant technological change in learning design List humanitarian learning problems that can be addressed by online and distance learning Distinguish between three evidence-based learning approaches relevant to the humanitarian context Explain the main criteria used to distinguish these approaches Distinguish development costs from delivery costs Compare cost vs. efficacy for three learning approaches Explain the relevance of blended learning for humanitarian learning Distinguish between self-guided and cohort-based learning Scope the complexity of an online learning project Identify possible sources of funding for online humanitarian education Identify factors to consider when developing a learning system Evaluate when scaling up …

Learning Strategies International

Online learning 101: Criteria to distinguish approaches

Reda Sadki Learning strategy

The table below summarizes criteria that you should consider to identify the appropriate approach for your online learning needs. At the top is the pedagogy and specific learning architecture. The key question is to ask: What does the learner get to do? Key decisions include the choice between self-guided learning (which scales up easily as it does not require synchronous interaction with other learners) and cohorts (which enable synchronous peer-to-peer relationships between learners). For a long time, a ferocious debate was waged between advocates of face-to-face learning who fetichized the value of IRL (“in the real world” interaction and advocates of online or distance learning. The evidence fairly definitively demonstrates that distance learning delivers slightly better learning outcomes, and that there is no learning efficacy benefit when you blend. However, your professional network is how you find your next job. It is also how you learn from others. Face-to-face contact is necessary for …

Complexity in humanitarian and development

Online learning 101 for humanitarian managers and decision makers

Reda Sadki Learning strategy, Presentations

I’ve just posted on LSi.io a comprehensive (65-minute) presentation intended for humanitarian managers and decision makers working in organizations without prior experience in online or distance learning. It includes numerous practical examples and case studies, as well as a description of the best available learning theory and best practice approaches most appropriate for the humanitarian learning context. Here are the 10 questions addressed: It’s not about technology. Really? What learning problems do you want to solve? What kind of online learning can prepare humanitarians? What do you need to know about costs, time, and complexity? Where’s the money? Do you need scale? Can you do more than transmit information with e-learning? If experience is the best teacher, how can e-learning help? Does e-learning work at all? How does all this fit together? This slide set was originally presented to the Assessment Capacities Project (ACAPS) on 22 September 2014. It is available for LSi.io members …

Bookshelves

Thick knowledge

Reda Sadki Content strategy, Learning strategy, Quotes

Toby Mundy on books as thick knowledge: […]Books have a unique place in our civilisation […] because they are the only medium for thick descriptions of the world that human beings possess. By ‘thick’ description, I mean an extended, detailed, evidence-based, written interpretation of a subject. If you want to write a feature or blog or wikipedia entry, be it about the origins of the first world war; the authoritarian turn in Russia; or the causes and effects of the 2008 financial crisis, in the end you will have to refer to a book. Or at least refer to other people who have referred to books. Even the best magazine pieces and TV documentaries — and the best of these are very good indeed — are only puddle-deep compared with the thick descriptions laid out in books. They are ‘thin’ descriptions and the creators and authors of them will have referred extensively to books …

Lenses rainbow

Unified Knowledge Universe

Reda Sadki Content strategy, Learning design, Learning strategy, Writing

“Knowledge is the economy. What used to be the means has today become the end. Knowledge is a river, not a reservoir. A process, not a product. It’s the pipes that matter, because learning is in the network.” – George Siemens  in Knowing Knowledge (2006) Harnessing the proliferation of knowledge systems and the rapid pace of technological change is a key problem for 21st century organizations. When knowledge is more of a deluge than a trickle, old command-control methods of creating, controlling, and distributing knowledge encased in a container view do little to crack how we can tame this flood. How do you scaffold continual improvement in learning and knowledge production to maximize depth, dissemination and impact? A new approach is needed to apply multiple lenses to a specific organizational context. What the organization wants to enable, improve and accelerate: Give decision makers instant, ubiquitous and predictive access to all the knowledge in …

Baby at seven months

Seven months

Reda Sadki Quotes

Alan Todd, Founder and CEO, Corp U: Today’s workplace culture is evolving at a break-neck pace as technological advances, shifting demographics, and new economic realities force corporations to reorganize, on average, every seven months. The challenge is real. Fortunately, so are the solutions. Read Alan’s full post: The Science of Learning: How to Develop Mindsets for Success in the Workplace Photo: My baby at seven months, on a beach in Soulac, France. August 2012. Personal collection.

Learning dashboard

Elements of a learning dashboard

Reda Sadki Learning strategy, Theory

“What is clear is that a learning rich culture will emphasize informal learning and more open learning designs rather than relying only on formal training approaches. The learning infrastructure consists of all of the formal, informal, and incidental activities, systems, and policies that promote individual, team, and organizational learning and knowledge creation.” Source: Watkins, K., 2013. Building a Learning Dashboard. The HR Review 16–21.

Belle Nuit 1920x1080

Webcasts, then and now

Reda Sadki Events, Video

(No, this is not a post about the Apple keynote meltdown.) When I started organizing live webcast events for the first time in 2006, they required extensive technical preparation, specialized software and hardware, and – most important – a group of really smart people gifted with more than a little bit of luck to pull off each event. Even as recently as 2011, I remember a time in Budapest when my young cameraman (one of a team of four) announced to me that his fancy P2 broadcast-quality camera could not connect to his equally-fancy webcasting software. I ended up hacking our MacBook Pro’s webcam, piloted remotely from another laptop using VNC… It was exciting to transform what had been a local, 19th Century-style lecture series into a series of global participatory learning events, but so much energy had to be expended on the technical issues that many people missed the point about the amazing affordances of technology …

ULTIMA™ 4: QUEST OF THE AVATAR

Games for health: 14 trick questions for Ben Sawyer

Reda Sadki Interviews

Ben Sawyer is the co-founder of both the Serious Games Initiative (2002) and the Games for Health Project (2004). He is one of the leading experts on the use of game technologies, talent, and design techniques for purposes beyond entertainment. He answered 14 questions by e-mail ahead of his presentation to the IFRC Global Health Team. 1. What is your favorite game? I used to reference an old RPG (role playing game) called Ultima IV. But, in reality, it’s Minecraft. Just such a great achievement and fun to play. 2. What is the worst “serious game” you have ever played? Most of them. 3. What is a game, anyway? A game by definition is a system, defined by rules, where people engage in defined competition to achieve a quantifiable outcome either against an opponent or the system itself. There are many dictionary-style definitions. In reality, a game is a mediated experience. …