Are you looking into enterprise level eLearning solutions? Have you been researching for the right place to begin planning? Are you trying to find an eLearning consultant who would help develop learning and knowledge management solutions for your organization?
Halt right there!
Take charge of your organization’s learning needs before you appoint an external consultant. The best learning solutions developed for any company are the ones with intimate involvement of trainers and managers with the eLearning consultants.
P3 in eLearning
Learn the basic P3 in eLearning to empower yourself to take informed decisions with consultants. Khan (2004) of Khan Academy developed a list of foundational elements that combine to create a complete eLearning framework. This list contains every possible step, procedure and process that leads to an enterprise level eLearning solution.
Just study the elements well and relate them with your immediate organizational needs. Remember, eLearning is all about people, process and product management.
People are the stakeholders as well as employees of your organization. Their professional development is your responsibility. A stagnant organization, devoid of any educational and training influx fails to yield the performance criteria figures.
The process in the eLearning P3 denotes the “how” of your learning management system. How is new knowledge developed? Is it based on learners’ needs? Is it driven by the gaps between the organizational learning and performance goals? What educational technology resources do you have in hand? What tools and systems need to be purchased? What are your budget constraints? Who will maintain your learning management system?
The product part talks about the final system that hosts your learning solutions. Will your eLearning courses be completely online or hybrid? What tools are needed to develop a learning organization through a strong community of practice? While these questions seem daunting, we assure you that they manifest themselves naturally in a logical (sometimes iterative) manner.
The key is to ensure that nothing has been left out. Remember, when you are at the planning stage you cannot rely on external help nor can you afford to miss out a detail.
Khan’s 8 elements
In this article, you will define your planning roadmap and determine your route and direction towards a learning enterprise. The following elements will help ground your plans and reinforce the P3. Let’s discuss how Khan’s eight elements contribute to the P3 in eLearning:
Adult and child learning theories define how we develop teaching strategies. Pedagogy refers to teaching and learning. This dimension addresses issues concerning content, audiences, goal and media analysis, design approach, organization and methods and strategies of eLearning environments.
In the planning stage, you need to define your teaching approach after identifying your learner and organization learning needs. The goal is to build upon previous knowledge and articulate existing experiences with new knowledge. ELearning program development is best explained as a customized learning experience for all stakeholders involved. This dimension creates a learner and organization centered eLearning program.
Examines issues of technology infrastructure in eLearning environments. This includes infrastructure planning, hardware and software. In the current times of extensive digital advancement, this dimension will require more planning time than ever. Collaboration tools have proliferated, making educationists and instruction developers spoiled for choice.
Your choice of learning management system and course authoring tool will determine how technologically up to date is your eLearning system. A rule of thumb for the current learner and knowledge consumer is to integrate mobile learning technologies in your program. Mobile accessibility improves learner engagement and course completion rates. The bottom line in selecting a technological infrastructure is its ease of use and support available.
3. Interface Design
Refers to the overall look and feel of eLearning programs. The interface design dimension encompasses page and site design, content design, navigation, and usability testing. This is also an important planning step. Aim for interface features that are user friendly and simple to navigate. Your learning management system providers can also customize your landing page according to your preferences.
Includes both assessment of learners, and evaluation of the instruction and learning environment. Evaluation criteria can be established using your expectations from the eLearning program. Another excellent method to evaluate and improve in iterations, is to develop a survey for learners and eLearning system administrators/moderators to answer periodically.
Refers to the maintenance of learning environment and distribution of information. Now is a good time to train your system moderators. What type of communication do you expect? Remember, active participation via comments and suggestions is important to create a growing organization.
6. Resource Support
Examines the online support and resources required to foster meaningful learning environments. Your LMS provider will provide support solutions depending on whether your system is cloud-based or stand-alone.
Relates to social and political influence, cultural diversity, bias, geographical diversity, learner diversity, information accessibility, etiquette, and the legal issues. This is a strong criteria list that will determine how close your learning environment is to the learner and your organization.
Issues of administrative affairs, academic affairs and student services related to eLearning. The human resource management will be responsible for developing and implementing the policies and procedures for your eLearning program.
It is admirable the way these eight dimensions contribute to a comprehensive P3 of an eLearning program. This is a great check list tool to adopt when planning or evaluating an enterprise level eLearning program for your organization.
The eight dimensions can serve as guiding stepping stones. Each can be modified to reflect the existing educational and collaboration technology. If you are new to developing an eLearning program for your organization, these eight dimensions as well as the P3 constraints will provide you with the confidence in decision making with the eLearning consultants.