So, what are learning technologies?
As we come to expect technology to enhance our daily lives, so too do we expect it to enhance how we work, learn and develop.
When we talk about Learning Technologies, we’re talking about the use of technology to improve teaching, learning and assessment. They can make training experiences more engaging because they are also an enabler of some key learning trends – blended, social, micro and macro, continuous, and even flipped. Here are some technologies that are already having a big impact on learning and development…
Mobiles and Apps
The majority of us have mobiles with us at any given time. Allowing learners to access material on them enables them to learn anywhere and anytime that is convenient, providing the content is written for mobile consumption.
This is about the incorporation of typical gaming features into non-gaming contexts, such as eLearning, to create engaging and effective learner experiences. Core gamification elements include points, badges, and leader boards, as well as timed activities, challenges and levels – basically anything that encourages friendly competition and leads to recognition and reward, which also happen to be the top two things that motivate employees.
MOOCs and Virtual Classrooms
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and Virtual Classroom Platforms are designed to mimic and enhance the same group discussions and work that you’d find in face-to-face training. As such, it’s possible to combine a variety of activities such as videos, reading and quizzes with peer-to-peer conversation.
Artificial Intelligence can enable personalised learning by monitoring and inferring individual performance, needs and interests to deliver relevant content and suggestions for improvement. The idea here being that the more relevant content is, the more a user will engage with it.
Augmented Reality is about overlaying a live view with digital content (i.e. by using the camera on a smartphone), enabling users to have an interactive experience in a real-world environment. For example, by pointing a phone at a machine or part, technicians can bring up a list of common faults, information on how to fix them, or even a portal to order spare parts.
This takes Augmented Reality a step further. Virtual Reality is a totally immersive learning experience that blocks out the real world. It can be used for any scenario, but it’s particularly useful for simulating dangerous or riskier environments (think pilots, soldiers and surgeons).
We know that learning doesn’t just happen on a Learning Management System, so it’s critical that we build up a picture of what employees are learning overall. xAPI is a specification that can collect data on a user’s learning activities across platforms and in multiple contexts, importantly both online and offline.
“Keeping up-to-date with the latest techniques and technologies when it comes to developing and delivering training is a core activity here at Amphigean. We’re often pushing the boundaries ourselves and delivering learning in innovative and unique ways, addressing the ever-changing requirements of learners. Keep an eye out for a new section on our website coming soon – all about learning techniques.”Managing Director Pete Simpson