Goal #1

Goal #1: Understand the relevance of eLearning practices in Training and Development in academic and corporate settings.

In the blog below, I am identifying with Dr. Johnson’s interview.  He says “it is clear that a lot of the policies and procedures that we have in place for the traditional programs are not going to work for these more innovative types of programs, so we need to rethink what is involved in online delivery” (Johnson).  I relate to this quote and suggest eLearning have their own set of guidelines.  This shows my understanding of current eLearning practices in training and development, because these are issues of quality training in both an academic and corporate settings.  I further discuss Bates and the importance of vision and planning of eLearning.

Understanding_eLearning_practices

Johnson, D. S. (n.d.). Interview by A Fein [Web Based Recording]. Institutional issues., Retrieved from http://learn.education.illinois.edu/file.php/1989/Week_02/johnson_transcript.pdf

Goal #2

Goal #2: Develop a comprehensive and strategic understanding of online program management issues.

In this blog below my assignment was to “use the readings as inspiration and think where I stood regarding models for eLearning courses or programs.”  In this assignment, it is evident I have a deep understanding of the importance and issues of eLearning program management. I compare Khan and Bates views of project management.  I was able to relate my understanding of managerial issues in my own work as a “lone ranger.”

Understanding_Management_issues

Goal #3

Goal #3: Understand the various stages of eLearning programs and initiatives in an organizational context.

The examples below show evidence to my understanding in various eLearning programs and initiatives in an organizational context.  Example 1, is my top ten questions an organization should consider prior to implementing an eLearning program.  In this assignment, I prioritize the issues pertaining to the management and development of eLearning Programs and give an explanation of each.  These top ten questions would give an organization insight beyond implementation on issues that will affect an organization’s a eLearning program at various stages.  Example 2, is a reflection on reallocation of funds that I would you recommend to my company if they were to launch an online initiative in the next 12 months.  I discuss reasons for changing the face-to-face classroom trainings to online courses.

Example #1

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Example #2
Funding_Stategies

Goal #4

Goal #4: Analyze management practices that support and facilitate the various stages of eLearning implementation and maintenance.

The forum posts below is are examples of my understanding of analyzing management practices in eLearning at various stages of eLearning.  Example 1, the assignment was to assume the role of a program manager of a five-year old online program and how to approach this task with both a formative and summative evaluation.  Then, how would I integrate the results from the evaluations.  Example 2, is an assignment about an institutional change case study.  Empire State College drastically changed all of their distance learning to all online in a year and a half.  I related to this management decision of implementation of eLearning to strong leadership.

Example #1

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Example #2

Empire_State_College

Goal #5

Goal #5: Conduct research that guides informed decision-making in eLearning environments.

In the weekly milestones leading up to the Final Project, my group and I explored an in-depth quality management in eLearning. We researched and wrote a paper about quality assurance, titled Ensuring the Quality of Higher Education in eLearning.   The research consisted of history, importance, literature reviews, and examples of quality eLearning in higher education today. For week 9 milestone, I presented my research and findings on quality of eLearning in higher education.  The presentation video gives evidence of my research with eLearning data, literature, and information on eLearning quality.  The knowledge gained will guide me to make informed decisions  in eLearning environments on quality in the future.

Ensuring the Quality of Higher Education in eLearning

Top 10 questions

tenTop 10 questions an organization should consider prior to implementing an eLearning program

1.  What are the costs involved to implement and develop an eLearning program? Is this a cost-effective solution?  The costs include: course development, purchasing a learning management system, IT support, infrastructure, additional staff and time.  Often the startup costs are very costly.

2.  Does the organization have content experts to develop effective courses? Are these experts computer savvy? Will the organization have an instructional designer to help?  Developing course materials and making them interactive can be difficult and very time-consuming.

3.  Does the organization have an effective Learning Management System?  Is the LMS easy to navigate and can it withstand the organizations number of users and class materials?

4.  Does the organization have effective course development software?  Is the software interactive?  Is the software mobile friendly?  Since learning tablets and cellphones with internet are fairly new, many course development software are not mobile friendly.

5.  Does the organization have reliable IT/ help desk support?  IT/ help desk support will be needed for working out log-ins, computer compliance, set-up, and technical support/issues for learners and instructors.

6.  What unit or person is going to be responsible for managing the eLearning project?  Having a leadership unit or one person to be in charge of progress, ongoing problems, and questions is needed for things to run smoothly.

7.  Does your organization have a vision and strategic plan for the eLearning program? Are there goals set for the organization to meet?  According to Bates “Visioning is a techniques that allows those working in an organization to understand the full range of possibilities for teaching and learning that technology can facilitate and the possible outcomes, acceptable or otherwise, that might result from its implementation (Bates, 2000)

8.  What type of training will the organization’s staff need prior to implementation?  Will the instructors or learners need training on technology? Well trained staff will help things run smoother upon implementation.

9.  How is the organization plan on funding the eLearning program?  Will you charge tuition?  Will you receive government funding?  ELearning costs are ongoing and long-term funding should be considered prior to implementation.

10.  How and when will the organization evaluate the new eLearning program? Who will do the evaluation? When implementing a new program it should be evaluated to get all the kinks worked out and to improve the programs effectiveness.

Resources:

Bates, A. W. (2000). Managing technological change: Strategies for college and university leaders . San Francisco: Jossey-Bates Publishers.

The Challenge of Collaborative Online Learning

There has been many changes since 2002 on how quick and convenient communication for learner support has become.  Changes in communication technology have included internet speed, internet availability, pricing on technology, technology advancements in general, and cell phones.  Many people, including myself have smart phones, which makes it very easy to send and reply to emails from classmates and instructors.  This has made communicating much faster with receiving knowledge through emails very quickly and being able to respond on the go.  From 2002-2012 many changes in technology have made internet faster, readily available, and more convenient for learner support.  These changes have had a huge impact how people communicate and the easability to communicate regardless of distance.  Support for Open and Distance Learning can be done through the internet with more resources available.

CD-ROMS and paper materials being sent in the mail are out of date.  Yet, synchronized and asynchronized course still have the same issues as now.  A course being an interactive CD-ROM or a asynchronized class on a LMS, both do not have personalized information.  Without a “live” person/instructor dialog and interaction is limited.  A mixture of synchronized and asynchronized is ideal for maximizing learning.  “The availability of learners to eachother and to the tutor has the potential to overturn the emphasis on distance education as an individual form of learning. The potential to create extensive dialogues and interchange electronically means that online teaching is often prioritising the learning group as the chief resource for learners and the focus for the tutor, rather than the needs of each individual learner, though these to can be accommodated in the pedagogical design supports that” (Thorpe, 2002).

~CM