Lori Reed | A Passion for Learning | elearning

When the Going Gets Tough, the Staff Needs More Training

Be sure to check out the April 2010 issue of Computers in Libraries Magazine.

I wrote a feature about the new Learning Content Management System launching this month at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. The article tells the story from start to finish of my search for a solution to manage learning when we were faced with not only having less staff but also staff who are busier than ever as our usage soars.

I also want to thank Dick Handshaw and his team at Handshaw, Inc., who donated hosting and support for Luminex Suite for the Library. They have donated resources and precious time to get Lumenix not only up and running but fully integrated with our HR system, PeopleSoft. We need more people and businesses to step forward and help libraries the way Handshaw and his team have!

Computers in Libraries 25th Annual Conference Next Week

If you are planning to attend Computers in Libraries next week, I’ll be moderating the Teaching: Technologies & Approaches track on Tuesday. Please drop by and say hello. If you can’t attend check back on this site. I will be blogging notes from the sessions here and tweeting as well.

Here’s the outstanding line up in the track!

TRACK E ● Teaching: Technologies & Approaches
Regency A/B/C/D, Ballroom Level
Speakers share their vast experience to help you select the right tools and methods for your environment and the learners involved. Moderated by Lori Reed, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library.

E201 ● LMS: What’s Out There & How to Decide!
10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Lori Reed, Learning & Development Coordinator, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Chad Mairn, Information Services Librarian, St. Petersburg College
With so many learning management systems on the market, including the freebies and open-source, where do you start? Reed explains what to expect from an LMS and LCMS (learning content management system), what’s available — from the most popular to the unknown — selection criteria for choosing a system (including factoring in costs for open-source), and how to get buy-in from administration.

E202 ● Reaching Reluctant Learners
11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Jill Hurst-Wahl, Assistant Professor of Practice, Syracuse University School of Information Studies and President, Hurst Associates, Ltd.
Sophia Guevara, Librarian, MLIS Technology Consultant
Veronica Rutter, Collection Development Librarian, New City Library
Andrea Simyak, Instruction and Funding Information Librarian, New Jersey State Library

With the U.S. President totally “connected,” and with many government forms, job applications, and college courses online, being digital is almost required. Sadly, being digital is not the norm for everyone. How do we move late adopters — both staff and library users, including professors, attorneys, or senior citizens — out of their nondigital comfort zones? This session provides tips and techniques for moving them to the online world and describes two different methods instructors used to bring technology into their libraries — structured, weekly, hands-on classes and staff members participating in Technology Tapas, a self-paced, online weekly tutorial modeled after the 23 Things program created by Helene Blowers and implemented at the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County. These two radically different instruction methods met the needs of their respective libraries because of the instructors’ determination to overcome the reluctance and fear of their learners.

E203 ● Training in the Cloud or Mobile Labs!
1:30 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Maurice Coleman, Technical Trainer, Harford County (Md.) Public Library, & Host, T is for Training (Library Training podcast)
Bobbi Newman, Digital Branch Manager, Chattahoochee Valley Library System
Delores Rondinella, Technology Training Coordinator, Stark County District Library
Jeffery Kreger, Emerging Technologies Systems Administrator, Stark County District Library

Talk about innovative training approaches! Newman and Coleman show how to use “The Cloud” to develop, schedule, organize, market and evaluate training for free or with very minimal expenditure. Rondinella and Kreger describe how Stark County successfully grew a mobile patron/staff training lab. Their overview includes: purchasing and maintenance of the mobile lab and its hardware, policies regarding training and server access (Coping with your IT Department), and developing an effective class curriculum for the community.

E204 ● Virtual Learning & Training: From Classrooms to Communities
2:30 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
Alison Miller, Manager, ipl2 Reference Services, Drexel University
Meredith Farkas, Head, Instructional Initiatives, Norwich University

Learning and training occurs in synchronous, asynchronous, and hybrid environments. Miller identifies which category of learner may benefit best from both the type of environment and the delivery methods used. Farkas teaches for San Jose State University’s School of Library and Information Science using Drupal and other social software tools in place of the traditional course management system. She discusses how she uses Web 2.0 technologies to transform the learning experience and how others can harness the power of these technologies in their own teaching.

E205 ● Instructional Technology: It’s a Team Thing
4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Lynda Kellam, Data Services & Government Information Librarian;
Beth Filar Williams, Distance Education Librarian;
Amy Harris, Information Literacy and Reference Librarian;
Hannah Winkler, Libraries’ Digital Designer;
University Libraries, University of North Carolina at Greensboro

During a time of budget crises and belt tightening, new approaches to the instructional librarian role need to be invented. A team approach permits collaboration across departments and skill sets. Hear how one university has a team incorporating the skills of the information literacy librarian, distance education librarian, digital designer, and the data services librarian. This panel discusses how they support instructional technology, accomplish projects without budgetary support, and walk through their workflow for a project to demonstrate how collaboration on a shoestring can work to benefit their users.

IL2009: E-Learning Trends & Tools

This session began with Frank Cervone talking about the trends in e-learning and I followed with a brief bit about tools for e-learning. The take away for my piece was that it really doesn’t matter what tools you use for learning–it’s how you use them. I really wanted to challenge people to think about e-learning and how they can help to make it more interactive for learners.

There were some really good questions from the audience. I’m posting two of them here for discussion. Please add a comment if you have ideas about either of these questions.

  1. A librarian working with high school students who are taking dual enrollment online courses via Blackboard asked how she can communicate more effectively with the students. She said she gets hundreds of questions via email each week from the students and does not have time to answer them individually. The high school students do not seem to like Blackboard but that is what she has to use. Ideas to help her?
  2. Another question came from an academic librarian about how to verify that a person taking or “attending” an online class is really that person and how can we be sure that the person is not paying someone or having a friend take the class for him or her. Frank gave a really good answer to this but I want to see what your thoughts are on this.

If you want to learn more about designing better self-paced e-learning check out this book: Michael Allen’s Guide to E-Learning

Link to my e-learning bookmarks: http://delicious.com/lorireed/e-learning

DON'T Imagine Them Naked! My Pres4Lib Virtual Presentation

I had a lot of fun putting this together. This was supposed to be my Plan B in case the live feed from my office did not work. But after putting it all together last night this morning, I decided it really would work better as a video rather than live session.

In the spirit of learning here are a few details about how I did this. I always seem to wait until the last minute with presentations. I came up with the title Wednesday night and began working on the PowerPoint Thursday around 5pm. First I did a title and notes for each slide so I would know what the framework would be. Then I used Flickr to find supporting Creative Commons images. It took hours to find the right photos. In all it took about 3 hours to create the PowerPoint.

Sometime during all this I came up with the idea for the opening scene. I tried recording the opening scene with a webcam but the quality was bad…even with a good webcam. My husband, who happens to be a brilliant video editor, asked me why didn’t I use our digital camera. After kicking myself in the head for not thinking of that I set off to find a flashlight and hat. It took about 10 takes to get the flashlight and handheld camera effects right.

After recording the opening scene I used Camtasia to narrate the PowerPoint. This took forever but I consider some of the takes as rehearsal! Next time I will record one slide at a time or a few slides at a time.

Once the PowerPoint narration was done I imported the video from my camera, added a title slide, transitions, and some spooky music. Anyone recognize the tune?

Then I produced the Camtasia project to default Internet settings and uploaded to YouTube. In all it took about 9 hours which comes to about 90 minutes of development per minute of presentation. I would say the norm is about 60 minutes of time per minute of e-learning material.

What does all this mean? When you compare development time of e-learning to face-to-face learning there is a much higher front end investment for e-learning. But once the development is done, you are done. The content is there for your learners to access at any time and you can move on to other projects. However when someone tells you to “whip together a quick tutorial” keep in mind that there is nothing quick about it!

You can read more about e-learning development time on the following sites:

http://www.elearningguild.com/pdf/1/time%20to%20develop%20Survey.pdf

http://www.nwlink.com/~Donclark/hrd/elearning/myths.html

p.s. Just for the record. The words of wisdom did not actually come from “Pete” or anyone else in recent years. I think it actually came to me from an episode of the Brady Bunch.

Get Virtual! Designing Learning for Second Life

My friend and associate Paul Signorelli‘s ASTD Chapter is hosting an exciting event later this month on designing learning for Second Life in Second Life. Details follow.

Get Virtual! Designing Learning for Second Life
Tuesday, Apr. 21, 2009 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM (Pacific Time)

Virtual worlds are proving to be engaging, rewarding and fun ways of delivering learning, with user satisfaction levels far higher than standard e-learning offerings. For the learner, the attraction of the virtual worlds lies in the ability to participate in learning environments that emulate real world scenarios with stunning graphics and storylines. Virtual worlds also open up the possibility for learners to engage in multiple events simultaneously, thus greatly increasing an individual’s learning capacity. And, virtual meetings lower costs by reducing the need for travel or expensive long distance conference call services.

Virtual worlds/realities are becoming essential tools for all learning professionals – even for those who are not simply catering to the interests of the Millennials (Gen Y). And, you don’t need to be a programmer to make it happen. These tools have been created to enable practitioners to easily design and deliver effective learning programs, with just a bit of education and practice. Come and participate in a full-feature session that will redefine your thinking on learning.

Presenter: Mike Abrams is Vice President of Business Development at TBD Consulting, Inc. He is heavily involved in ASTD, currently as part of ASTD National’s Technology Team, and in the past as ASTD Chapter President. Mike also recently presented sessions on Second Life at the 2009 ASTD TechKnowledge® Conference.

Mike focuses on developing strategic partnerships with companies to enhance the learning function. He is an experienced Process Improvement specialist, and has expertise in all aspects of technology in training, such as LCMS, LMS, Online Collaboration, and e-learning. Mike is an experienced coach and facilitator, and is certified in Ken Blanchard’s Situational Leadership II® and Wilson Learning Sales.

Register here: http://www.acteva.com/booking.cfm?bevaid=179630