Wednesday, October 26, 2005

E-LEARN thoughts - Wednesday PM

I changed my schedule so I could attend Dr. Vladimir Uskov's session on Technology for Advanced e-Learning. His expertise is evident and he has been able to build a lot of in-house tools to support his own e-learning efforts at Bradley U. It was educational (no pun intended) to see where some of the barriers exist when trying to offer the full virtual classoom experience. (Video compression/bandwidth issues, etc.) He clearly has some success with his work at the University. Looks like something to emulate, in principle if not in specific application. )

Knowledge retention is always an issue and I took in the session entitled "You want me to remember what??" Their tool was the "Profound Learning System" being prototyped through a number of diferent groups learning Outlook. The results of their test series (immediate posttest, 30 days posttest, 60 days posttest) were quite interesting to me. As a classroom veteran its a little alarming to see how retention drops off after a relatively short time.

(Comment from audience member sotto voce: "what a stupid question to ask" after seeing one of the posttest reviews. Odd and vitriolic reaction.)

The charts were a little tough to view, but I'm looking forward to picking the presenter's brain after the session about PLS and what it could mean to us.

(Had the chance to speak with him and he very kindly pointed me in the direction of the vendor who is apparently re-tooling their product as we speak. )

My final session is with the group from Belgium, presenting Tools2Team: a web-based Knowledge Management tool. At first I thought they weren't serious about their features wish list, but they really are trying to add a staggering amount of capacity to a web-based tool. Could it really be all things to all people? So far it looks promising in principle, if a little rough in its initial presentation.


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