Wednesday, December 05, 2012

DevLearn Conference Video: Putting Design Back into ID

At DevLearn this year, the eLearning Guild taped a number of sessions and has made them available to members.

I was honored to have my session recorded: Putting "Design" back into Instructional Design.  eLearning Guild members can access the video archive on the eLearning Guild's website:

The eLearning Guild: Putting "Design" back into Instructional Design

If you do take the time to watch the video, I'd love constructive feedback and ideas for how I can improve this session for the future!

Thanks for watching :)

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Joe Sabia – opening keynote at Brainshark #sharkmeet12

Joe Sabia – opening keynote at Brainshark #sharkmeet12

Video maker
TED Talk

Joe follows viral culture.

What could be transferred to business communications? From the world of viral video?

Think about a presentation you’ve given in the past month.  Based on the principles Joe is going to talk about, how might you integrate those principles?

CDZA – creating videos for this music channel.

Keeping people on the edge of their seats…don’t reveal it all at once.

Joe starts off and shows us two videos on detecting extra solar planets.  Two methods:

Take 1 – talking head,  dull voice over. But more information. If you watched it 10-12 times you might get more out of it.  Facts, but dense.  Dry and boring.

Take 2 – exciting visuals, more memorable. Made reference to pop culture to pull people in. But all over the place and distracting.

 Neither really very effective.

Two questions any presenter must ask:

How do you present info in a way people will learn?
How do you present info in a way people will pay attention?

How do you present info in a way people will learn?
  1. Brevity
  2. Clarity (no confusing graphs!)
  3. Relevant aesthetics – no pictures of hotdogs and bunnies!

So how do we get people to pay attention?

Joe looks at videos and internet culture. What compels us to send the video around of the cat falling into the fish tank?
Right now, SO much content out there. So what do we share and why?

Benefits of connectivity
Unprecedented access to info
Global connectedness
Work from anywhere!

But there’s a darkside…

Makes it so damn hard to pay attention to anything.

Easy to be addicted to all the stuff that's out there.

Joe shows an Excel spreadsheet that looks like Facebook – so you can use this at work and no one will know!

Attention is a valued commodity.  Keep in mind that people probably have 15 tabs open on their browser and that Facebook Excel page…

Use creativity to stand out and capture that attention!

Six things that might be interesting…to apply to presentation world? Not trips or tricks, but perspectives in grabbing attention.

 1. Dessert and vegetables

The Huffington Post – it’s reliable. Huge headline, big photos. Serious politics up tight. But then you go down and there’s John Hamm without a shirt. The mullet approach to news – business up front, party at the bottom. Get your veggies at top ad your dessert at the bottom. We all love dessert.

Sitting in class (veggies) vs. recess (dessert).

Barry Schwartz – great with the dessert and veggies.

Dessert is a moment of escapism. Makes the veggies more memorable.

As long as dessert is on the table – doesn’t matter if in beginning, middle or end.

2. Cultural references as dessert

The power of cultural references

Cultural love – analogizes information, baked-in familiarity. Shows you have a pulse on culture.

Obviously, challenges to do this in culture world.  But how can you connect back to cultural references?

3.  Interactivity

“tone of voice is personality expressed through words”
tests, evals, url slides, polls.

“Liking” on Facebook – you’re showing the world your view and doing marketing for another organization.

How do you get people to interact without clicking their mouse? But get them to move their body behind the computer screen?

Skittles Lick the Rainbow video.  Touch the space. Touch the screen.  Get your hand licked by a cat.

Passive isn’t as good as active.

4.  Your Space as a Playground

Think outside of the walls of your classroom.  (shares a video of a classroom teacher who has a ppt on screen that “comes alive”).

In a presentation world, your confined to a box.  Your PPT box.  Don’t see it as a box, see it as a universe.

Choose your own adventure – an interactive Facebook experience.  In the first comment for a photo, you click a link to go off…

5.  Unscientific Research

“What happens when you put an android, winpho7, iphon 4 – what grills faster?” (youtube video) – cooked three phones on a  grill.  Over 1 million views.

Apply human, unscientific views - -ask people – raise hands.

Information for a captive audience.
Offers convincing, offbeat evidence.
Shows passion.

6. Power of Surprises

Your world may not allow for a lot of this absurdity.  There is a time and a place for fun. 

Replace the word fun with the word surprise.

Tania Luna – her company is called “Surprise Industries” – she consults with corporates. Give people the unexpected.  Stand out from everyone else.

In primates, surprise intensifies emotion by 300-400%.

That element of surprise makes us talk about it and share it.

Surprises can be a lifestyle.

Joe likes to pay for things with $2 bills.

Surprises make everything better.

How does this work with presentations?

Make a pact – put one surprise in your presentation. (But don’t give anyone a heart attack or completely inappropriate – know the boundaries).

Look at the presentations that people are doing that you want more of.  Think of your own ways to do these things.  Be inspired by what other people are doing “good artists borrow; great artists steal.” ~Picasso

When it comes to presentation making – be the 1%--stand out from what everyone else is doing.  Don’t let the corporate world corporatize you out of your creativity.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Putting the Design back into Instructional Design #DevLearn

Here are my slides from my presentation on Thursday, November 1, 2013 at the eLearning Guild DevLearn conference in Las Vegas.

Thanks to a great audience -- we had lively conversation and great food for thought!

DevLearn 2012 Wrap Up #devlearn

Wrapping up a few days in Las Vegas for this year's eLearning Guild DevLearn 2012 conference.  I could NOT miss Halloween with my kids, so flew in Thursday afternoon.  So I missed a lot, but still had enough time to talk my head off and soak in a lot of elearning goodness.

Shortly after I arrived, I jumped on stage to participate in a panel with Koreen Olbrish, Janet Clarey, Jane Bozarth, and Jeannette Campos on New Emerging Tech. Great format as we pulled Jeannette in from Skype and Jane on Twitter.  Koreen handed us a new topic every five minutes-- from QR codes (hot or not?) to 3D printers.  

At 3:00 I presented a concurrent session on Putting the Design Back into Instructional Design (slides forthcoming!) I had everyone closing their eyes and imagining "good design" - forks and phones and Harry Potter rides came to mind.  Not surprisingly, eLearning examples were not the first thing to pop into people's minds.  We talked a lot about Design with a big D and then came back to elearning and what we can all do to be better DESIGNERS of elearning.  

The afternoon/evening was all about DemoFest.  I shared a demo of an example of our new Responsive Elearning Design Framework - all HTML5.  If you want to know more about RED, check out a webinar presentation that Steve Rayson did last month.  

The downside of presenting something at DemoFest is you can't wander around and see what everyone else is doing.  I did get to check out some interesting work at the next table over that Reuben from EdCetra Training showed off:  a responsive onboarding program developed as an "app store.  Each app is a short onboarding exercise and the whole thing is built off the TinCan Experience API. 

Which leads me to Tin Can. You couldn't walk through the conference this year without tripping over one...

So Friday morning I listened to a panel on TinCan - "Everything you ever wanted to know..." And while it may not have answered everything I want to know about the new Experience API and what many are calling "the new SCORM", it was useful to hear some real world examples and listen to the questions of real developers who are trying to figure out what the impact of this will be.  There's a lot of hype about TinCan at the moment...and a lot of confusion.  My message to people: no need to panic.  This will take time.

Then I sat in on a session with Sharon Boller (@sharon_boller) on converting a PC based elearning course to an iBook. I've been playing around with iBook Author recently and think it could really meet the needs of a lot of what gets produced as elearning these days. Sharon did a nice job presenting their design process and the finished output.  Learn more about their project and download a demo from the Bottom Line Performance site.

The closing keynote (and so sorry I missed Wednesday's fire breathing keynote!) wrapped up with a hilarious eLearning Guild documentary. The final speaker, Dayna Steele, urged us to find our inner rock stars and to be nice to each other.  Karma pays off, man.

Of course, the most memorable bits of the conference are the informal hallway chats, the late night beer of elearning conference, and the Las Vegas experience.  Last night, I saw The Beatle's LOVE -- a Cirque du Solelil extravaganza.  Talk about experience design! 

So thanks to the eLearning Guild for putting on another memorable conference.  

I'm off to catch a plane home now!  See you on the other side.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Is Your Elearning Interactive?

If you missed my recent webinar on interactive elearning, have no fear!

Answering the question, "did you record the webinar?" Why, yes. Yes, we did.  Watch the 60 minute webinar on Youtube.

And answering the question, "will your slides be available?" Why, yes. Yes, they are.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Creating Effective Design Models - Thursday Sept 20th Kineo Webinar

Join me this Thursday, September 27 at 11:30 EST for another webinar in Kineo's fall series: Creating Effective Design Models

At Kineo, we've been creating our own names for the design models or patterns that we find ourselves applying over and over again to solve different types of learning challenges with our clients.  Having a common language that we use 

As usual, I'll share lots of examples and look to you to help create another lively back channel!

Register for the webinar here.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Responsive eLearning Design (RED)

iPads, iPhones, Galaxy Tabs, laptops, desktops -- it's now a learning-on-the-go world where most of us regularly access multiple devices in a day. (Me? I've got three: my laptop, my iPhone, and my Kindle).

We've got authoring tools that output to Flash and HTML and do this and do that.

And everyone's scratching their heads about how to build that next elearning/mlearning/learning  project. (Seriously, can't we drop the prefix by now?)

At Kineo, we've been exploring options for delivering content in this new world order. Yesterday, Steve Rayson shared some of the cool things our team has been looking at.

In case you missed it, the webinar recording and slides are now available.  Find out more about Responsive eLearning Design and why we think it's the way forward.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Free Kineo Webinar (join me on Sept 13!) : Interactive eLearning?

Join me this Thursday, September 13 11:30 EST for a free Kineo webinar on that elusive holy grail of e-learning....interactivity!

What is it? How do we use it effectively? Why do we need it and do we? What are the dangers of interactivity? ...(hint: beware of CCBB!!!) What does effective interactivity look like?

And while we're waiting for Thursday to come round...take a moment to share your unique thoughts on interactive elearning in the comments.  Feel free to answer the questions I've posed here -- or answer something else completely.

We'd love to have participants share their own examples of good interactive elearning.  Let me know if you've got a great (or even a terrible) example you'd like to share!

Details and registration info on this week's webinar and more available here:  Kineo Events Registration and Info Page

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

What Are You Reading?

I have the perpetual stack of books next to my bed and stacked up in my Kindle.

Right now I've got at a few design/learning things going on:

In Pursuit of Elegance: Why the Best Ideas Have Something Missing by Matthew May

Learning Everywhere: How Mobile Content Strategies Are Transforming Training by Chad Udell

The Design of Everyday Things by Donald Norman

100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People by Susan Weinschenk

And lest you think I'm all business:

The Hobbit -- reading aloud to my kids :)

Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy -- haven't read this since high school.

What are you reading? And what else do you think I should be reading? (Because my stack is not nearly big enough as it is!)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

ASTD LearnNow Day 2 notes #ASTDLN

These are my notes from the morning session of ASTD LearnNow Conference, happening July 25 & 26 on the lovely shores of the Charles River in Cambridge, MA.  I’m co-facilitating this event with Bob Mosher (Ontuitive), Conrad Gottfredson (Ontuitive)  and Chad Udell (Float Learning).

Bob Mosher is starting the day off with some discussion around where do we start implementing these new technologies?  "This war is won one project at a time?"

  • Create a proof of concept to solve one nagging problem. Don't try to boil the ocean!
  • Pick an audience that is excited about these new tools and comfortable with technology.  Keep your sample size manageable. 40,000 people isn't a pilot.  Or start with your own internal L&D group where you can keep the control.
  • Use existing learning assets -- build with existing content.  (You've probably got tons of stuff -- people just can't find it now.)
  • Time and scope -- be realistic.
  • Contextualize it -- put it in the workflow!  

People sharing AHA moments from yesterday:
  • Embedded performance supporting -- putting the resources at the point of need
  • Starting within our own groups to experiment with these methods and maximize our own productivity
  • Positioning ourselves as a learning group -- we've got to bring to the table more strategic discussions to how we can impact performance 
  • Design mindset -- we have to shift things. Senior level people want to see something in two weeks.
  • I wish we'd never uttered the words "informal learning" -- it's a really broad brush and how do you put budget on that?  I need to structure and design for informal learning where people are having a conversation on their way to the parking lot? 
  • I can pick a small group of people from my organization of 80,000 and start there -- I can now think of ideas that I can deliver for a smaller chunk
  • L&D teams have put themselves in a box of moments 1 and 2 (new and more). We should be owning all five moments (new, more, apply, change, solve).
  • In training, we've trained ourselves to think that everything is NEW -- that we need a three day course.  But often it's a more -- we have existing models to work on -- the interventions can be different.
  • Get data to understand WHO your workforce really is.  Data to suggest that someone can learn something without sitting in a classroom. 
An embedded performance support system demo...Bob shows off the Ontuitive EPSS product...

As you work with a system or a workflow, you have resources available to you that map to the pyramid.  So the learner/performer can self-select what they need in that moment - they can get more formal instruction, and so on.  These resources can link into the LMS, so you still get your tracking...

Can do this as part of a software system or something more soft like a process (Marketing Planning Process).  (Common objection we hear is you can't build performance support for soft skills because there aren't steps.  But there are steps! It's not click a button or do this menu but the step might be "identify your frame of reference/target market.")

I did a quick tour of different social media tools and platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Google + and so on) so people can get a better sense of the tools out there...

Chad now shares his tour of tools for creating mobile tools.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

LearnNow Morning Session July 25 2012 #ASTDLN

These are my notes from the morning session of ASTD LearnNow Conference, happening July 25 & 26 on the lovely shores of the Charles River in Cambridge, MA.  I’m co-facilitating this event with Bob Mosher (Ontuitive), Conrad Gottfredson (Ontuitive)  and Chad Udell (Float Learning).

LearnNow – re-emerging discipline…of supporting our employees in all the many ways that they learn.  Not just in the classroom and through formal learning initiatives.

We often chase the shiny pennies – we put the means (the technology) ahead of the ends. We don’t integrate these tools and solutions into the context of what people are DOING.

Peter Senge, The Fifth Discipline – wrote twenty years ago that we need to become learning organizations.  Have we become that? How do we (the L&D folks) be strategic to the organization?  WE didn’t do it because back then, the business environment didn’t demand that.  But today…businesses are starting to demand it.

“We power effective performance at every changing moment.” Who owns this? What must our contribution to the organization be?

The world is changing:

·      We are truly global – performance in Asia impacts Europe impacts America.
·      Disruptive technologies reshape things and trigger new business models
·      Demographic churn
·      Political instability and the correlation with business confidence

To survive, orgs need to learn at the speed of change…continuous learning and new skill cycles…constantly re-tooling to maintain competitiveness.

The old ways fail, unless we learn how to Learn Now. We have to power effective performance at every changing moment. We have to own this.

We try to align with strategy, but strategy is a moving target.       

To learn at the speed of change, your org MUST:

·      Develop external intelligence monitoring capacity – know what’s going on out there in the marketplace!

·      Cultivate a dynamic learning mindset across the entire organization.
Changing the culture and mindset is a big issue. Participants share how changing from a stand-up ILT culture is a BIG CHALLENGE. Maggie Martinez, does research on analytics and environment – how receptive is your enterprise to new technologies?  Check her stuff out of you want to learn more about where your org is at now.

·      Develop leadership capacity to support learning agility throughout the org.

·      Put in place and evolve org learning and performance support systems.

·      Evolve learning and support tech to optimize and support learning agility.

How well are we sustaining competency in an ever-changing work environment? 

Train > Transfer > Sustain

Most of us are in the TRAIN phase…and not focusing on TRANSFER and SUSTAIN.
Lines of business want us starting from the SUSTAIN phase…Learn Now is about starting from Sustain and working backward…that’s what the business needs us to do in order to keep the focus on PERFORMANCE.

The Five Moments of Learning Need

1.     APPLY – at the heart – this is the bull’s eye and what we need to focus on.  When the performer is in the midst of the task and they need to DO something.
2.     NEW – new content – the theory and all that stuff
3.     MORE
4.     CHANGE – keeping up with all the stuff that’s changing!
5.     SOLVE – complex problems, when we get into trouble how do we get out of it?

For more on the Five Moments, read Con’s article on Learning Solutions:

Or my blog notes from our LearnNow session in April 2012:

Formal Learning = New and More
Informal Learning & Performer Support = Change and Solve and Apply

When are the five moments consumed? Any time during the day – it’s not a linear thing.  We want to put the five moments in the context of consumption.

When do we need this stuff?  Before, During, After
During means you’re in the problem.  Where a tool emerges to help you solve the problem.

Captain Sully pulled out a JOB AID to help him land the plane on the Hudson River.  He didn’t want to log into an LMS or read a blog in that moment of need.  He needed the right resource in THAT moment.

Customer comes up and starts screaming at you.  Not the moment for a job aid or a tweet.  But you can say, “I’ll go talk to my manager and the manager pulls up the resource…”

If we do the before and after better, we’ll have fewer during moments.

What is BLENDED learning?  It’s thinking about before the learning event, during the learning event, after the learning event.  It’s helping the learner/performer APPLY. 

  • Before Apply – provide planners (reference guides, wikis, blogs, elearning)
  • During Apply – provide sidekicks (job aids, context sensitive help, FAQ’s, coach/mentor, help desk, twitter)
  • After Apply – provide quick checks (checklists, assessment tools, feedback loop)

Thursday, July 05, 2012

LearnNow in Boston July 25 and 26th

Smack in the middle of summer, a great learning event right in Boston.  (OK -- technically, it's in Cambridge...but it's right on the Charles River with great views of Boston.)

Come join me, Bob Mosher, Conrad Gottfredson and Chad Udell as we talk about learning technologies, the five moments of learning need, mobile, social and embedded performance support. 
Here's where to go for more details on the conference and to register.  Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Kineo Brainshark Webinar Wed June 27th

We've been playing around with Brainshark lately and think it has some great potential as part of a creative learning campaign.  It's an easy to use presentation AND it publishes it out to all mobile devices.

Are you using Brainshark already at your organization and want to think about ways to take it to the next level?  Not sure what I'm talking about and want to learn more?

Come join me, Steve Rayson of Kineo, and the Brainshark team on Wednesday June 27th (that's tomorrow) at 11:00 eastern.

Registration details are here.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

This Month on Learning Circuits...

I'm honored to be this month's guest blogger over at ASTD's Learning Circuits blog.

Check out my first post: Accidents Do Happen.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Going Social

If you know me, you know I'm a bit of an extrovert and I crave social interaction.

And, like most of us, I like to learn through collaboration and conversation.  (Ideally, while roasting marshmallows around a campfire...)

So last month when I prepared for my LearnNow conference presentation on "Implementing Social Learning", I reached out to my social networks.

Highly suggest joining Jane Hart's Social Learning Community if you want to dip into this topic more and learn what real people at real organizations and doing about facilitating more collaborative and social work environments.

And big hat tip to Sumeet Moghe of Thoughtworks for sharing his presentation at LSCon on implementing a social learning platform (they went with Jive).

Jane Bozarth's diigo page was another great resource.

To consolidate some of my own learning on this topic, I wrote an article for this month's Kineo Newsletter: 

Going Social -- Let's Get This Party Started.

Updates from the Road (April ASTD Events!)

As you may remember, April was my ASTD month, with bi-coastal appearances at the ASTD New England Innovations in Learning Conference outside Boston and the LearnNow event in San Francisco.

Here's a recap of my comings and goings...

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Nancy Duarte: Creating Stories that Resonate #storytraining

These are my live blogged notes from an eLearning Guild/Citrix presentation with Nancy Duarte, author of Resonate and Silde:ology. 

The story: a likeable hero, she encounters roadblocks, she emerges transformed (the perfect three part story structure)

Organizations need to keep creating ideas to continue to reinvent themselves. The lifecycle of an org (start, grow, mature, decline)…so we need to reinvent ourselves all the time.  And that’s what good presentations can do.  They can spawn ideas to reinvent…

good stories make our hearts race.  But there’s often a gap from storytelling to presenter…and the presenters just fall…flat.

Powerpoint so often used to present reports.

But when you have a high stakes opportunity to persuade, you need to use story.

How do you incorporate story?

Every great presentation should have a beginning, middle and end.  But there needs to be a turning point between those acts.

The audience is the hero of the story.  They have all the power in the room. They’ll determine your fate.  The presenter is the mentor.  They help the hero get unstuck, or they leave a magical tool.  When someone leaves your presentation – you should be giving them something of value.

Joseph Campbell came up with an 18 part story structure:  ordinary world, a call to adventure, refusal of the call, meeting with the mentor, crossing the threshold (as you persuade them…)

The shape of great speeches:


What is – what could be – and you call out the gap…

It’s like sailing – as you sail against the wind, you need to capture resistance.  Think about your audience, what  will they throw back at you.  What will be there resistance?  Plant that resistance into your presentation. Your audience will get to your point of view quicker, if you plant that resistance into your talk.

Your ending should paint the picture of what the future is going to look like.  A picture of your hope.


She goes on to analyze Steve Job’s speech unveiling the iPhone. 

A STAR moment “something they’ll always remember”

The stakes are higher for making better presentations! TED and Twitter…people will trash your presentation if it’s not up to par.

If you have an idea, a dream, a way to move your company forward, you need to latch onto that and share it and change the world.

Questions from the crowd:

If you’re doing product training – let’s hope you have a good product!

Nancy encourages everyone to find their passion…people won’t invest in their communication skills unless they’re passionate about  what they’re communicating about…

If you’ve got to complete something in three days, odds are that the stakes aren’t that high.  Instead it’s “grind this out for the planning meeting.”  Categorize the importance of things and fight for the ones that are really important. When it’s really hard stakes, then fight hard for  the time. And then knock it out of the park.

When you’re doing a webinar – stand up, move around, use your hands.  Post pictures of people in your space to help you remember that there are people on the other side of the technology!

Make sure it’s bite size chunks of content.  You need to be more interesting than their email.

Be a consumer of great communications.  Watch TED talks…and then PRACTICE your skills.

For training programs where the SME wants to include everything and the kitchen sink – remind them that this isn’t a report, that we need to focus on the story. for more!

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Learning to Fly

A few weeks ago, after an Easter candy sugar fueled meltdown, my six year old daughter learned how to ride a bike without training wheels.  In about 20 minutes. 

Here’s how it went down:

“Hey, let’s take off those training wheels and see what happens…”

“Really, mom? OK…”

I held onto the back of her back a couple of times and then just let go. She was off.  A few weeks later, she’s zipping up and down our street like an old pro, a face full of wild exuberance.  It’s good to be a kid.

Some thoughts from her experience:

  • IMG_2551She started at the beginning and went through the paces.  A tricycle for a few years, then training wheels. (scaffolded learning support)
  • She had my support and encouragement when we took off the wheels.  I held the back of her back and quietly let go when I could tell she had balance on her side. (a gentle guide)
  • She was motivated.  Her older brother has been riding for awhile and she likes to keep up with him.  (Note: he did not learn this whole bike riding thing nearly as quickly).  (social learning)
  • Plus, bike riding is really FUN. (intrinsic motivation)
  • She was ready. (learner readiness)

What have you learned lately? And how did you learn it? How is her experience different from yours?

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Karl Kapp Book Tour: The Gamification of Learning and Instruction #gamiLI

Kapp_CoverIt’s the Cammy Bean stop on the blog book tour for Karl Kapp’s newest book: The Gamification of Learning and Instruction: Game-Based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education
Karl Kapp is a professor of instructional technology in Bloomsburg University’s Department of Instructional Technology in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania. He’s one of my favorite professors that I've never actually studied with (although he has taught me a ton).  Over the years, Karl and I have had wonderful arguments about gamers and gender and instructional design. He took me on my first tour of Second Life and opened my eyes to the possibilities of virtual worlds. He wasn’t my professor, he just wanted to share. So thanks, Karl, for sharing with all of us yet another thoughtful book about a topic on everyone’s minds these days: gamification and learning.  And now I’ll share a few thoughts of my own…
If you think gamification is just about putting badges into your courses, then this book is for you.
If you're still on the fence about whether games work for learning, then this is certainly the book for you. 
If you need to gain buy-in for games within your organization and need to know what theories to cite to support your arguments, this is the book for you.  
If you need some examples of how games can be used in learning, yep, this is the book for you.
But if you really want to start designing and creating games, go out and play 'em.  
But still, that's not enough. There's a practical element we’re going to need if we’re really going to get this learning game thing right, so I just want to take a moment to focus on what it will take to build a game within an organization.  
In Chapter 9 "Managing the Gamification Design Process", Karl talks about the process for designing a learning game and who you'll need on your team.  At the moment, I suspect this project team list will be too daunting for most internal organizations:  
"The following team members typically are involved with a project for the gamification of learning and instruction. Not all of these individuals will be involved every time. It depends on the size and scope of the project. However, a project manager, instructional game designer, artist, at least one subject-matter expert, and a programmer or two are almost always involved." 
(Karl then goes on to talk about the need for animators, music/sound technician, and other specialized roles.)
Karl says if you don't have an instructional game designer (and these are hard to come by), you should go out and get an instructional designer who likes to play games.  But if you then consider that many organizations, especially smaller ones, are working with "home grown instructional designers" (who are maybe just powerpoint jockeys or really good at Captivate, but not actually instructional designers in the truest sense), then I'm not sure that many organizations will be able to do this in-house -- or at least not do it well.  I'll go out on a limb and say this bodes well for the growth of the outsourced instructional game design companies!
Karl doesn't talk much about budgets or time frames in all of this, but something to bear in mind.  Seems like it takes more time and more money than a lot of organizations have for a lot of their "learning" projects. Karl, what say you? (And he'll probably say something like, "it doesn't have to take more time or more money".)   
Jeannette Brooks of Articulate wrote about the book just yesterday and talked about how Storyline (Articulate’s soon to be released development tool) will put “gamification within easy reach of any e-learning developer.”  What do you think? Will Storyline make this all possible?  I suspect there’s more to good game design than the tool though, right?
So should there be more learning games? Absolutely.  Will more organizations design and build them.  Absolutely.  Will there still be a lot of the same old training solutions coming out of the same old training departments?  Most likely...
So I'll leave you with this cautionary tale from Karl Kapp:
"Too often the learning profession embraces a new concept as the answer to all learning problems and overhypes the concept to the point of backlash. It is important to approach the gamification of content and learning carefully and methodically. If gamification is seen as a panacea and applied to every single learning event, it will quickly become trivialized and non-impactful. Stay focused on using gamification for the right learning outcomes."
(Which is to say, don't be part of the problem. Instead, go out and read Karl’s book and find out why gamification isn’t just badges and points, but much, much more….)
Game on.
Follow the conversation on Karl’s Facebook page:
And be sure to buy the book:  The Gamification of Learning and Instruction.

And a final note about our modern lives and the need for games…
This really has nothing to do with Karl's book, but more just a pesky rant I've got in me about games and gamification in general.  It seems our modern world has lost so much purpose...we need and want to be entertained because most of the challenge is gone (a very first world problem)...or we need to be numbed to the challenges we do have.  And now we need to dress up our boring jobs with games because otherwise who wants to learn them or even do them...I don't know. Kind of makes me sad…

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A conversation on measurement and metrics (#ASTDLN)

These are my notes from the final workshop session at ASTD Learn Now in San Francisco.  Bob Mosher and Conrad Gottfredson of Ontuitive are leading a conversation on metrics and measurement. 

The things that we currently measure about learning are things that the learner doesn't really care about.  (% of course completions, pass/fail rate, # student days, etc.)

Bob Mosher -- there is value in smile sheets.  Research shows that if people like you're training, they'll take more.  There is defendable data when 12,000 people say that class was good.

When we measure the first two moments of learning need (new and more) we can measure with knowledge & skills gain -- certification, demonstrable skills, compliance.

Gloria Geary, Why Don't We Just Weigh Them?

When we move to the world of performance support, we need to gather data to show that we make a difference to the organization to achieve its aims -- we need to measure competency and measure moments 3-5.  We need to tie it to on the job performance gains:

  • time to proficiency
  • lower support costs
  • completion of job-related tasks
  • increased user adoption
  • optimized business processes
  • customer/employee loyalty, morale, and/or retention
  • sales close/cycle time
But we need to be measuring what has a critical impact to the business.  We need to be measuring moments 3-5 (apply, solve, change)

There are three ways we can measure:
  • digital monitoring (we can track activity, see where they click, see where they spend time).
  • performer monitoring (quick checks)
  • “others” monitoring

We can do quick checks and ask the learner how they’re doing – but not for those things that would be catastrophic if we don’t do them right.

Shouldn’t the real measurement be whether or not they’re selling more chairs (assuming they’re selling chairs, of course)? What’s been the business impact?

Critical Skills Analysis – determine along a spectrum where things have critical impact to the business. Work with SMEs to create a rubric for the lines of business and for different skills.  
These are the lines of business perception of critical business actions – these aren’t the learning team’s perception…Bob and Con show a 1-7 ranked scale – a critical impact rating.  At one end is complete catastrophic results – e.g., someone will die.

Make sure you’re investing in measurement in the right places.  Figure out what’s happening in the right places.  Figure out what’s happening to improve performance support and to improve critical business impact.

We can’t measure everything. Don’t try to boil the ocean.  Measure what matters.  How deep do I go?

The new analytics:

Chad shares some data you can get from a mobile app:
  • time spend on a page
  • frequency of use
  • sharing info
  • type of info accessed
  • conversion points (are they doing what we’ve designed the experience to do?)
  • Other things…does access frequency go up or down over tie? Does engagement time go up and down?)
Analytics more in line with what marketing people look at.

Sample analytics that they got:
  • 20-25% of visits last between 10-30 mins (this was for a mobile quiz game that took about 2 mins – so people were spending more time here)
  • users returned to the app in less than one day
  • Game rules only comprised 1% of the time consumed – this was the manual/user guide – it confirmed for the developers that they had designed a good UI. 
This was data measured outside of the LMS. The digital analytic world – google analytics – it’s a new era in data. 

Yahoo Web Analytics – free tool used with advertisers.  To determine what % of business is coming from different channels.  At yahoo, using it to determine what learners are doing – what content they go to, what pages are useful, it allows them to understand behavior.  If there’s content out there that no one is looking at…then why?  This allows you to determine where they go and how long they stay – and to view it buy country/demographics.  Who’s using it?

Business example – health insurance provider using a performance support system:
  • 84% of sales force used the embedded learning solution DAILY
  • 6% increase in DAILY work productive – finding correct info, not waiting for answers, not bothering others (measurable, observable behaviors)
  • 2.4 hours saved per week per employee
  • So that means they had more time to sell.  $454K saved based on audience of 3,000 users
How would you go about gathering data at the moment of APPLY?

Chad Udell on Tools for Mobile Development (#ASTDLN)

Chad Udell (@visualrinse) of Float Learning is doing a quick rundown of tools he uses to help design, manage and build mobile projects.  This is day two of the ASTD Learn Now conference in San Francisco.

UI Stencils Use these templates and tools for rapid prototypes that are to scale for the device you're building to...

Project management tools like basecamp, assembla

Prototyping tools

  • Fieldtest - web based tool to create fast mobile prototypes. (focused on smartphones and up = android, iOS, windows mobile)
    Chad shares a prorotype he created that you go checkout:
  • App cooker An ipad app for building iphone and ipad apps (very meta) $25...
Once we've got the design prototypes...the tools to build the application:
Chad cannot recommend any of the rapid learning tools for dedicated mobile development.  

"Anything that's out there now, is not doing it well.  if you want to build high quality mobile learning apps, you have to use dedicated mobile tooling."

HTML, CSS, and learn some basic design for user experiences for mobile.

jQuery mobile It's just like webdesign. Dreamweaver has this stuff built in for the newer versions.
(And Chad exhorts everyone to stop being scared of HTML - it's just an outline -- it's not programming!)

PhoneGap -- the only open source mobile framework that supports platforms.  Helps you bundle up content to an app that's distributable to a marketplace (android, apple, etc.) Adobe purchased phonegap and is building it into all of their tooling.

Misconception that apps have to go through the app store.  Apperian...helps you avoid putting proprietary content into the App store.

Ah-ha’s and reflections from the first day of LearnNow (#ASTDLN)

The group shares some of their key moments and reflections from yesterday’s workshop session here at ASTD Learn Now conference in San Francisco.  I’m co-facilitating this conference with Bob Mosher, Conrad Gottfredson, and Chad Udell.

One project at a time.  We can start with one small piece and not try to do everything at once.

Thinking about blended learning vs. blended training.

The pyramid (see my notes from yesterday)

Two clicks, ten seconds.  We need to get people to the information they need quickly. 

The five moment of needs: new, more, apply, change, solve.  Moving the training org to think about all five of those moments and not just the first two.

We need to get to SUSTAIN.  Focus really on what’s needed.  All of the time expended on this long classes, etc. that people just forget after the event.

The implication for the formal learning if you change to thinking about this five moments of need – you re-design the formal event now to map into this new vision.