Navigating the Changing Landscape of Lifelong Learning — from prsa.org by Susan B. Walton, Ph.D.

The first step to finding the right PR learning program is understanding what’s currently available to learners:

  • Undergraduate and graduate degree programs remain the pathway to earning a college degree in public relations, and now include more online options than ever before.
  • Certificate programs are shorter courses of study that often focus on strengthening specific skills, such as crisis communications or knowledge of a specific industry such as health care. They are offered through professional associations, employers, private entities or academic graduate programs, especially programs geared toward working professionals.
  • Microcertificate or microcredential programs may be even shorter and more focused than certificate programs. They can be a series of short courses and are usually focused on skills needed for a specific employer or job, such as analytical tools for a particular web platform. Successful completion of the microcertificate(s) may earn a microcredential, such as a badge, which can be displayed on the recipient’s social media sites.

If you’re a professional who’s considering jumping back into school, then certificate and microcertificate programs are excellent ways to dip a toe in the water.


On somewhat related notes:

Public Infrastructure on Skills — from the-job.beehiiv.com by Paul Fain
The search for population-level solutions to strengthen links between education and work.

The new Center for Skills by C-BEN seeks to bring clarity and coordination to the skills space. Launched this week with a $1.5M grant from Walmart, the center will attempt to create objective, reliable ways to assess and validate skills, to help bridge the gap between education and the workforce.

The center could help the millions of employers who are looking for skills-based solutions and aren’t going to build their own skills academies, says Clayton Lord, director of foundation programs at SHRM.

“It’s hard for small and mid-sized businesses to find their way into this conversation,” he says. “We can’t create something that is more arduous for employers.”


Closing The Skills Gap: An Inside Look At The Achievement Wallet — from forbes.com by Dr. Sarah DeMark

In the dynamic realm of today’s workforce, skills gaps are increasing. Highly skilled talent is out there, but information gaps and traditional hiring methods make it challenging for skilled talent and employers to find one another. While digital recruiting systems have made it more efficient to find prospective candidates, qualified candidates are often vetted out of the hiring process when they do not match the exact criteria, according to a study conducted by Harvard Business School.

With the rapid pace of change — think automation, new technology, and artificial intelligence — businesses must innovate and think about the best ways to create career mobility and career pathways for their workforces into the roles of tomorrow.

In Pursuit of Agency
Imagine a future where learners can instantly see where they stand in a crowded job market, assess their abilities and gaps, and identify opportunities for growth. Or where employers can identify candidates with specific, often hard-to-spot competencies and skills. Possible? Yes. Western Governors University (WGU), the country’s largest competency-based, workforce-relevant online university, is reimagining that future by deploying the Achievement Wallet for WGU students nationally and working students at educational institutions across the state of Indiana.

Also see:

 

The $340 Billion Corporate Learning Industry Is Poised For Disruption — from joshbersin.com by Josh Bersin

What if, for example, the corporate learning system knew who you were and you could simply ask it a question and it would generate an answer, a series of resources, and a dynamic set of learning objects for you to consume? In some cases you’ll take the answer and run. In other cases you’ll pour through the content. And in other cases you’ll browse through the course and take the time to learn what you need.

And suppose all this happened in a totally personalized way. So you didn’t see a “standard course” but a special course based on your level of existing knowledge?

This is what AI is going to bring us. And yes, it’s already happening today.

 

Guiding Students in Special Education to Generate Ideas for Writing — from edutopia.org by Erin Houghton
When students are stuck, breaking the brainstorming stage down into separate steps can help them get started writing.

Students who first generate ideas about a topic—access what they know about it—more easily write their outlines and drafts for the bigger-picture assignment. For Sally, brainstorming was too overwhelming as an initial step, so we started off by naming examples. I gave Sally a topic—name ways characters in Charlotte’s Web helped one another—she named examples of things (characters), and we generated a list of ways those characters helped one another.

IMPLEMENTING BRAINSTORMING AS SKILL BUILDING
This “naming” strategy is easy to implement with individual students or in groups. These are steps to get you started.

Step 1. Introduce the student to the exercise.
Step 2. Select a topic for practice.


[Opinion] It’s okay to play: How ‘play theory’ can revitalize U.S. education — from hechingerreport.org by Tyler Samstag
City planners are recognizing that play and learning are intertwined and turning public spaces into opportunities for active learning

When we’re young, playing and learning are inseparable.

Simple games like peekaboo and hide-and-seek help us learn crucial lessons about time, anticipation and cause and effect. We discover words, numbers, colors and sounds through toys, puzzles, storybooks and cartoons. Everywhere we turn, there’s something fun to do and something new to learn.

Then, somewhere around early elementary school, learning and play officially become separated for life.

Suddenly, learning becomes a task that only takes place in proper classrooms with the help of textbooks, homework and tests. Meanwhile, play becomes a distraction that we’re only allowed to indulge in during our free time, often by earning it as a reward for studying. As a result, students tend to grow up feeling as if learning is a stressful chore while playing is a reward.

Similar interactive learning experiences are popping up in urban areas from California to the East Coast, with equally promising results: art, games and music are being incorporated into green spaces, public parks, transportation stations, laundromats and more.


And on a somewhat related note, also see:


Though meant for higher ed, this is also applicable to the area of pedagogy within K12:

Space to fail. And learn — from educationalist.substack.com by Alexandra Mihai
I want to use today’s newsletter to talk about how we can help students to own their mistakes and really learn from them, so I’m sharing some thoughts, some learning design ideas and some resources…

10 ideas to make failure a learning opportunity

  • Start with yourself:
  • Admit when you don’t know something
  • Try to come up with “goal free problems”
  • Always dig deeper:
  • Encourage practice:
 

From DSC:
Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to gift someone an article or access to a particular learning module? This would be the case whether you are a subscriber to that vendor/service or not. I thought about this after seeing the following email from MLive.com.
.

MLive.com's gift an article promotion from December 2023; one must be a subscriber though to gift an article

.

Not only is this a brilliant marketing move — as recipients can get an idea of the services/value offered — but it can provide concrete information to someone.

Perhaps colleges and universities should take this idea and run with it. They could gift courses and/or individual lectures! Doing so could open up some new revenue streams, aid adult learners in their lifelong learning pathways, and help people build new skills — all while helping market the colleges and universities. Involved faculty/staff members could get a percentage of the sales. Sounds like a WIN-WIN to me.

 

Exploring blockchain’s potential impact on the education sector — from e27.co by Moch Akbar Azzihad M
By the year 2024, the application of blockchain technology is anticipated to have a substantial influence on the education sector

Areas mentioned include:

  • Credentials that are both secure and able to be verified
  • Records of accomplishments that are not hidden
  • Enrollment process that is both streamlined and automated
  • Storage of information that is both secure and decentralised
  • Financing and decentralised operations
 

Where a developing, new kind of learning ecosystem is likely headed [Christian]

From DSC:
As I’ve long stated on the Learning from the Living [Class]Room vision, we are heading toward a new AI-empowered learning platform — where humans play a critically important role in making this new learning ecosystem work.

Along these lines, I ran into this site out on X/Twitter. We’ll see how this unfolds, but it will be an interesting space to watch.

Project Chiron's vision: Our vision for education Every child will soon have a super-intelligent AI teacher by their side. We want to make sure they instill a love of learning in children.


From DSC:
This future learning platform will also focus on developing skills and competencies. Along those lines, see:

Scale for Skills-First — from the-job.beehiiv.com by Paul Fain
An ed-tech giant’s ambitious moves into digital credentialing and learner records.

A Digital Canvas for Skills
Instructure was a player in the skills and credentials space before its recent acquisition of Parchment, a digital transcript company. But that $800M move made many observers wonder if Instructure can develop digital records of skills that learners, colleges, and employers might actually use broadly.

Ultimately, he says, the CLR approach will allow students to bring these various learning types into a coherent format for employers.

Instructure seeks a leadership role in working with other organizations to establish common standards for credentials and learner records, to help create consistency. The company collaborates closely with 1EdTech. And last month it helped launch the 1EdTech TrustEd Microcredential Coalition, which aims to increase quality and trust in digital credentials.

Paul also links to 1EDTECH’s page regarding the Comprehensive Learning Record

 

Sparking online joy: five ways to keep students engaged — from timeshighereducation.com by Andrés Ordorica, Marcello Crolla, and Lizzy Garner-Foy
Five guiding principles to use when designing and developing content for short online courses that will keep students engaged

Keeping students engaged is a big challenge and one that’s key to making a short online course successful. With a diverse audience, a variety of learning preferences and a multitude of distractions in the online space, how can you create a course that successfully retains students’ attention? Here, we explore five guiding principles for designing an online course that is engaging and enjoyable.

By offering bitesize learning, embracing variety and interactivity, infusing meaning into content, fostering a learning community and adhering to the “less is more” principle, you can create a course that captivates your audience and cultivates a lasting love for learning. 


Speaking of pedagogical-related items, also see:

 

Will one of our future learning ecosystems look like a Discord server type of service? [Christian]

 
 

The 2023 Global Sentiment Survey — from donaldhtaylor.co.uk by Don Taylor

Excerpt:

This year’s Global Sentiment Survey – the tenth – paints a picture that is both familiar and unusual. In our 2020 survey report, we noted that ‘Data dominates this year’s survey’. It does so again this year, with the near 4,000 respondents showing a strong interest in AI, Skills-based talent management and Learning analytics (in positions #2, #3 and #4), all of which rely on data. The table is topped by Reskilling/upskilling, in the #1 spot for the third year running.
.

Donald Taylor's GSS 2023

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Also see Don’s report here >>

 

 

How Easy Is It/Will It Be to Use AI to Design a Course? — from wallyboston.com by Wally Boston

Excerpt:

Last week I received a text message from a friend to check out a March 29th Campus Technology article about French AI startup, Nolej. Nolej (pronounced “Knowledge”) has developed an OpenAI-based instructional content generator for educators called NolejAI.

Access to NolejAI is through a browser. Users can upload video, audio, text documents, or a website url. NolejAI will generate an interactive micro-learning package which is a standalone digital lesson including content transcript, summaries, a glossary of terms, flashcards, and quizzes. All the lesson materials generated is based upon the uploaded materials.


From DSC:
I wonder if this will turn out to be the case:

I am sure it’s only a matter of time before NolejAI or another product becomes capable of generating a standard three credit hour college course. Whether that is six months or two years, it’s likely sooner than we think.


Also relevant/see:

The Ultimate 100 AI Tools

The Ultimate 100 AI Tools -- as of 4-12-23


 

AI Aids In Connecting Learning and Performance Ecosystems — from learningguild.com by Markus Bernhardt and Teresa Rose

Excerpt:

The ways in which employees access information, surface answers to questions, and find the right subject matter experts is shifting and drastically improving. With this, so is access to and potential efficiency of formal learning and training.

The question is, how do these elements fuse together in the reimagined ecosystem? What will performance support, formal learning and training, or upskilling and reskilling look like when we combine the best of digital and asynchronous tools, as well as synchronous and in-person endeavors.

Power Performance with Microlearning’s Purpose and Potential — from learningguild.com by Robyn Defelice

Excerpt:

Because we are dealing in performance-based microlearning, each campaign and product will have its own purpose and potential (P&P).

The P&P are not derived from the organization’s definition but by the goals of the campaign itself.

Performance Pathways (Purpose) and Use Cases (Potential) provide opportunity to think through the alignment to a campaign goal while preparing for the design of the microlearning products.

Augmented Reality: Your Next Step Into Immersive Learning — from learningguild.com by Bill Brandon

Excerpt:

I asked Debbie Richard for her thoughts on the uses of AR and immersive learning. Debbie is the founder and president of Creative Interactive Ideas, where she helps talent development professionals thrive and flourish in their careers.

Debbie offered this reply:

“Developing an augmented reality experience is a great way for instructional designers to get started with immersive learning. There are a number of AR development applications that require little to no programming skills. All the learner will need to access the experience is a smart device.

Some great examples of using augmented reality in immersive learning are:

    • Performance support…
    • Language support…
    • Visualizations…
 

ANALYSIS: ‘Microcredentials’ poised to disrupt higher ed as degrees lose relevance to employers — from campusreform.org by Shelby Kearns; with thanks to Ray Schroeder on LinkedIn for this resource

Key points:

  • Survey respondents are demonstrating confidence in microcredentials–online training programs that take no more than six months to complete–as four-year degree programs often overlook job training.
  • ‘Grade inflation and efforts to help everyone … attend college make it harder for employers to differentiate among applicants.’
 

Instructional Design 2023: Experts Share Top Predictions — from td.org by Jes Thompson

“As technology options continue to increase for IDs, they’ll have a lot to choose from to create useful learning experiences. To prove our worth to the organizations we work for, it will be more important than ever to focus on the solution rather than the technology—especially as layoffs continue in the tech industry. Hopefully we’ll see a greater presence in events and online networks as people try to find new roles. I think we’ll continue to see an influx of educators coming into the profession too. As a field, we’re in a great place to learn from the experience of others and to use technology to find innovative ways to support our learners.”

Heidi Kirby, Customer Education Manager and Co-Founder, Useful Stuff

 

“I think we’ll continue to see an influx of educators coming into the profession too.” — which brings me to another article:

Edtech Career Opportunities: 7 Tips To Stand Out At A Job Fair — from teachercareercoach.com

Excerpts (emphasis DSC):

Are you a transitioning teacher looking for an edtech career? If so, you’re in luck! Jeff Patterson, the CEO of Gaggle, hosts virtual Edtech Career Fairs.

This is a great chance to learn about the edtech industry and connect with key players. So, grab your pen and paper and get ready to take notes! We’ll be sharing some insight to help you make the most of your experience and stand out from the crowd. Let’s get started!

 
 
© 2024 | Daniel Christian