ID and eLearning Links (1/21/18)

    • Will Thalheimer shares some new questions using the techniques in his Performance-Based Smile Sheet book, including a simplified version of his “world’s best smile sheet question.”

      tags:assessment training

      • Recently, in working with a company to improve their smile sheet, a first draft included the so-called World’s Best Smile Sheet Question. But they were thinking of piloting the new smile sheet for a course to teach basic electronics to facilities professionals. Given the topic and audience, I recommended a simpler version:

        How able will you be to put what you’ve learned into practice on the job?  Choose one.

        A. I am NOT AT ALL ready to use the skills taught.
        B. I need MORE GUIDANCE to be GOOD at using these skills
        C. I need MORE EXPERIENCE to be GOOD at using these skills.
        D. I am FULLY COMPETENT in using these skills.
        E. I am CAPABLE at an EXPERT LEVEL in using these skills.

        This version nicely balances precision with word count.

    • I asked in Julie Dirksen’s Facebook group if there was any eye tracking research specific to elearning. I’ve read research related to general web reading and usability, but I wondered if there are any differences in attention when people are reading to deliberately and consciously learn. Brian McGowan helpfully pulled together this list of resources as a starting point for research.

      tags:e-learning research usability attention

    • Companies with more remote workers have more women in leadership roles because the focus is on productivity and results, not office politics or “face time.”

      tags:research telecommuting

      • The study’s authors speculate that the reason the numbers are so high is because women at remote or mostly remote companies are more likely to be fairly evaluated.

        “It’s because remote work requires companies to focus on the most important aspects of work—productivity, progress, results—rather than less important things like face time in the office, office politics, traditional notions of what leadership ‘looks like,’ popularity or likability, or hours spent at your desk,” they write.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Instructional Design and E-Learning Links

6 Tips for Staying Productive While Working Remotely

I’ve been working at least partially from home since 2006. I love it, but it does require some deliberate effort.  I find that I’m actually more productive working remotely than I am working in an office. Here’s how I do it.

6 Tips for Staying Productive While Working Remotely

1. Set a Schedule

I set an alarm and get up in the morning like I always have. I have a normal schedule of when I work, when I take lunch, and when I stop in the afternoon. That schedule is somewhat fluid, and I often work an hour or two late in the evening after my daughter is in bed. I find that having a baseline schedule, even a flexible one, makes it easier to separate my work and personal life.

While many employers worry that remote workers will be too distracted by home and not get anything done during the work day, I find the opposite is true for me. I find it easy to get sucked into email or work when I should be “off” in the evening.

2. Get Dressed

I get dressed in real clothes every day; if I stay in my pajamas I’m not motivated. I wear comfy clothes, but I know people who wear nicer clothes even working from home because it helps their mindset. I once worked with a woman who wore a suit every day working from home for years because it was how she could be most productive.

3. Seek a Change of Scenery

I work from Panera or a coffee shop once or twice a week because the change of scenery is helpful. In fact, if I’m running a little behind on a project and need a really solid day of work to get caught up, taking my laptop to work from another location for a few hours is often the jolt I need.

4. Plan Face-to-face Interaction

Working remotely can be isolating. I’m happier if I schedule lunches with friends or former coworkers. Once or twice a month is enough for me, but you need to find the right balance of interaction for your personal needs. That face-to-face interaction is important, even for introverts like me.

5. Pay Attention to Your Natural Rhythms

I pay attention to my natural rhythms. For example, I know I have an easier time writing in the mornings, so that’s when I do my heaviest work. I leave boring administrative tasks like invoices and accounting for the early afternoon when I hit the post-lunch slump.

I take a 20 minute nap nearly every afternoon. I learned years ago that I’m more productive with the nap than without. If I don’t get a nap, I at least take 5-10 minutes to close my eyes and meditate or do progressive muscle relaxation. You might not need that, but listen to your body and figure out what you do need. Maybe you need a walk in the afternoons or a few minutes outside in the mornings. Maybe your most productive time is after lunch, so you can schedule your heaviest work for that time.

6. Keep a To Do List

I use Remember the Milk for my daily to do list. I use Google Calendar for my schedule, and I use various spreadsheets for specific projects. I am always more productive when I have a prioritized list of my tasks to complete. Breaking larger tasks into smaller ones also helps keep me on track.

Your tips?

If you currently work remotely (or have in the past), what did you find helpful in maintaining your productivity?

 

My 10 Most Viewed Blog Posts from 2017

My 10 Most Viewed Blog Posts from 2017

Based on the number of views, these are my top blog posts from 2017.

  1. Instructional Design Isn’t Dying. It’s Evolving. This post also earned an honorable mention in eLearning Learning’s MVP awards.
    Recently emerged monarch butterfly
  2. Scaffolding in Microlearning
    Screenshot from Duolingo
  3. 40+ Instructional Design and eLearning Books
    40+ Instructional Design and eLearning Books
  4. Converting Traditional Multiple Choice Questions to Scenario-Based Questions
    Converting to Scenario-Based Questions
  5. Managing the Complexity of Branching Scenarios
    Branching scenario with exponential growth
  6. How Long Should We Let Learners Go Down the Wrong Path?
  7. How to Start Creating Conversation-Driven eLearning
    Conversation-Driven eLearning
  8. How to Get Started Writing a Branching Scenario for Learning
    Get Started Writing Branching Scenarios
  9. What to Write First in Branching Scenarios
    What to Write First in Branching Scenarios
  10. Objections to Stories for Learning
    Objections to Stories for Learning

My post on Immediate and Delayed Consequences in Branching Scenarios didn’t make this top ten list, but it was a finalist for eLearning Learning’s MVP awards.

My goal for this year was to continue posting consistently, with a regular post every other week and a links post about once a month. I met that goal and published a total of 41 posts in 2017. I also wanted to continue to write about storytelling and scenarios, since that’s my favorite niche.

  • 26 regular posts
  • 15 links posts
  • 16 posts on storytelling and scenarios

Thanks to everyone who reads this blog, especially those who comment, share, and like my posts. Blogging would be a valuable tool for reflection even if it was just for myself, but it’s so rewarding to hear from people how my posts have helped them. I’m looking forward to more great conversations in 2018!

 

Branching Scenario Prototype in Twine

I built this branching scenario in the open source tool Twine. This scenario is moderately complex, with a total of 17 pages (or passages in Twine terminology) and 8 different endings. The ideal path has 5 decisions to reach the best conclusion.

I generally use Twine as a prototype for review and testing purposes. You can use Twine as the finished product though, especially if you do some formatting to make it look better. This is currently pretty rough (just text on a white background), but that’s OK for a prototype.

If you use Twine as a prototyping tool, you can build the finished version in Captivate, Storyline, or another tool of your choice.

Try the scenario out yourself by clicking below (the scenario will open in a new tab).

Click to open the scenario in a new tab.

This is the map of the entire scenario. You can see how many of the choices are reused.

Twine map of the entire scenario

Want to learn how I created this?

Read the previous posts in the series to see my process for creating this scenario.

 

Can’t get enough? Check out all of my posts on Storytelling and Scenarios.

 

 

ID and eLearning Links (12/3/17)

  • This is the link I send people to debunk the blanket claims about “people forget X% after Y time.” The reality is that how much people forget depends on who your audience is, what they’re learning, and how you train them.

    tags:training instructionaldesign research myth

    • The amount a learner will forget varies depending on many things. We as learning professionals will be more effective if we make decisions based on a deep understanding of how to minimize forgetting and enhance remembering.

    • To be specific, when we hear statements like, “People will forget 60% of what they learned within 7 days,” we should ignore such advice and instead reflect on our own superiority and good looks until we are decidedly pleased with ourselves.

    • Many of the experiments reviewed in this report showed clearly that learning methods matter. For example, in the Bahrick 1979 study, the best learning methods produced an average forgetting score of -29% forgetting, whereas the worst learning methods produced forgetting at 47%, a swing of 76% points.

  • Mini-scenarios and branching scenarios provide better assessment than traditional multiple choice, but this provides some other options for deeper assessment that can still be scored by a computer.

    tags:assessment scenario e-learning instructionaldesign feedback

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Instructional Design and E-Learning Links