Sunday, October 01, 2006

Break Out of the Box - From Breakthrough eLearning

I wish I had a nickel for every time a client told me "we can't do that" when we suggest that they connect their learners in online discussion groups, or introduce audio elements to increase engagement, or add interactive Flash exercises to better explain complex processes. Usually, the reason they say that they cannot do these things is because of the limitations of the authoring software or learning management system that they happen to use. They feel they are "boxed in" by the technology choices they have made previously.

It does not have to be this way. Sometimes the boxes in which we find ourselves are more real than imagined (kind of like the boxes that mimes indicate with hand gestures).

You can break out of your technology boxes with a little creative thinking. Some strategies that immediately come to mind include:
  • Mixing and matching differing learning technologies that have different strengths to achieve desired results (e.g. seamlessly linking to discussion board software from a learning system that does not have this functionality)
  • Work-arounds to enhance the functionality of existing learning technology (e.g. using existing telephone bridges for audio when teaching with web conferencing technology)
  • Introduction of easy-to-use Web 2.0 tools (e.g. Blogs and Wikis) to provide missing communication elements
  • Doing away with ridiculous and over-zealous IT policies that do not allow for any flexibility concerning the introduction of new technologies in aid of learning (or having these hosted externally)

Read the rest here->

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