Instructional Technology/ELearning


Incorporate e-learning or blended learning into the corporate strategy by linking training to a business goal.

  • It is imperative that training needs are clearly defined and matched to business goals. Management must then communicate loud and clear these strategic messages to all departments, champion its initiation, and maintain its support until results are achieved.
  • Of course, one needs to be mindful of the concept of "scope creep," in which too many project needs are tied to a learning solution that tries to answer all departmental needs but ends up never fully adopted by any department.

Match the appropriate e-learning learning methodologies to training needs.

  • The foundation of organization-wide e-learning is the licensing of a learning management system (LMS). At its simplest level, an LMS registers students, runs courses, and generates reports on their completion. At more complex levels, an LMS performs many other functions, such as creating certification tracks, allowing the entry of offline learning results, and so on.
  • Buyers should only license systems that support either the SCORM (Sharable Courseware Object Reference Model) or AICC (Aviation Industry Computer Based Training Committee) standard for e-learning programming, and should only license content that is compliant with those standards. Most systems, but not all, comply with at least one of these standards. Compliance with one of the two is adequate, since most content providers will provide content for either.
  • Buyers need to be aware of another standard that isn't related to content production, the Standard Object Access Protocol (SOAP). This enables an LMS to integrate with a human resources information system. This integration can enable anything from the automatic updating of employee information from a program such as PeopleSoft to more complex analyses of job performance and training results.
  • A newer product is the Learning Content Management System (LCMS). This enables the storage of content pieces such as images, videos and documents in the system with the purpose of making them available for content creation by the organization.

ELearning Defined

E-Learning is not just about how technology is used in education. It is a much broader term that has come to include both technical and social dynamics. It is not a stretch to say that our society is moving (has moved) from an industrial age to an information age based on knowledge. E-Learning will have an increasing role in this shift. Some people think of E-Learning as just online or web learning, but it is a very narrow view. There is more to it than just learning with computers and more elements makeup E-Learning than just websites. Cognitive Design Solutions (CDS) created three different levels of E-Learning definitions. The three levels are: Internet enabled instruction, Technology-based instruction and Learning tools of the New Economy. [1]

  • In internet enabled instruction definitions dealing with networking technology would be found.
  • The Technology-based instruction includes methodology issues such as: instructional design, best practices and collaboration elements.
  • Learning tools of the New Economy look at cultural and social impacts that are being advanced by technology.[2]

Basically, what CDS is saying is that to do E-Learning justices one must look at the whole makeup of E-Learning (the technology, methodology and social elements). These three elements have interaction with each other to produce new networks to support learning. When instituted correctly, E-Learning, provides a new array of tools and practices that can add value to a traditional learning setting.

Return to Instructional Technology.

Last modified on 9 April 2011, at 12:13