Fabrizio Cardinali, CEO of eXact learning solutions has identified ‘ten commandments of enterprise learning content management in the iPad tablet era’ (http://www.exact-learning.com/en/resources/whitepapers).
“The iPad not only makes a ‘mobile learning machine’ affordable and accessible but it also removes the previous limits and frustration of poor visualisation and connectivity,” believes Cardinali. “The iPad is both effective and efficient in terms of pedagogic soundness and semantic richness.
“I don’t know or think it’s going be the iPad – most likely Android based alternatives – but I am sure that the use of tablet-based learning will explode in the next months with a host of location and identity management features being built in to the hardware,” said Cardinali who, in addition to his role at eXact learning solutions, sits on the Board of Directors of the IMS Global Learning Consortium (http://www.imsglobal.org) and is chair of the European Learning Industry Group (http://www.elig.org/). “This will make location based, context aware, learning content personalisation available and affordable – overcoming the costs or hurdles involved in ‘mobile learning 1.0’.
“Today, learners are able to take a personal learning machine from their pocket and that machine understands where they are, who they are and what they’re good at or interested in – interworking location based learning, personal digital identity and portfolio management within mobile learning solutions. The machine may hook up to publishers, web and narrowcasters’ stores offering just the right content the learners need, wherever they are and at whatever time slot they’re able to use it – on demand – with learners paying ‘just-in-time’.”
Cardinali’s ‘ten commandments of learning content management’ are grouped under four headings: discover and focus (the first three ‘commandments’), design and implementation (the next three), train and transfer (the next two) and envision and guide (the final two). They are:
- Learning content production methodology and workflow. You need to identify and define processes, stakeholders, roles, steps and deliverables.
- Learning content classification methodology. You need to define learning objects’ metadata, vocabularies and classification standards.
- Learning content templating. You need to define corporate learning contents, and produce XML templates, considering the learning materials’ multi-layout, format, language and channel publishing needs.
- Pre-existing content ingestion. You need to take account of legacy import and third party content management systems, learning management systems/ virtual learning environment (VLE) integration and cross publishing strategies and protocols.
- Pan-European 24/7 multi-language and multi-format production and indexing services are now a pre-requisite.
- Learning content management system (LCMS) /learning management system (LMS) selection, set-up, integration and deployment. You need to customise the ‘look and feel’ of the learning materials; the workflow, metadata, vocabularies, taxonomies and templates, as well as third party LMS/ VLE, skills and portfolio integration.
- Training and up-skilling of internal managers and stakeholders.
- Training and up-skilling of third party stakeholders’ content developers.
- Future trends: media-based personalisation (the definition of multi-channel production and location-based, context-aware delivery of learning materials).
- Future trends: skills and portfolio based personalisation (the interoperability of skills maps, personal development plans, skills gap analysis and competency management).
Comment: Regardless of your views about the iPad and its likely use in delivering learning materials, Cardinali’s point is well made: advances in technology are enabling ‘e-learning’ to actually do the things it only claimed it could do a few years ago. From a delivery point of view, these are exciting times for the e-learning world. Hopefully, the quality of the learning content is going to keep pace with these advances.