LAS is an award-winning provider of elearning consultancy, design, development and training services in the UK and internationally.
Established in 2005 as LearningAge Solutions, we work with some of the best known organisations in the world to boost their performance through the innovative use of learning technologies. Working in partnership with our customers, we draw on proven principles from human behaviour, how people learn and how the brain works to create impactful digital learning solutions with real return on investment.
Rob is a designer through and through who is fascinated by how we learn, what we remember and why we pay attention to certain things. He is a huge enthusiast of all that technology can offer to enhance learning and has completed a huge variety of projects in his 14 year career.
He is the editor and co-author of The Really Useful eLearning Instruction Manual published by Wiley and featuring contributions from the brightest and best elearning minds on both sides of the Atlantic.
by Rob Hubbard
Posted 24 April 2020
Our human-centred Next Generation Blended Learning methodology is proven and highly effective. It can be used to rapidly design and deploy blends and allow them to be further enhanced over time. Here is how it works:
Importantly DON’T begin by looking at the content. Start by understanding the learners, their needs, what the organisation wants them to achieve, what they need to know to do this and which skills are the most important. Also identify the constraints for the blend, for example; it needs to be available in X weeks, it must be delivered on a particular platform, it needs to fit within a certain budget. This can typically be completed in around a day with a few phone calls to the right people.
Categorise the knowledge, skills, behaviours and attitudes that you want to develop in learners as per the Next Generation Blended Learning methodology:
- Knowledge - divide into Recall (what you want learners to hold in their heads and instantly recall) and Refer (the information it is OK for them to look-up to when needed)
- Skills - into those that are High and Low-risk to the individual or the organisation
- Behaviours - into those that are hard to change and easy to change for that particular audience
- Attitudes - into those that are likely to be easy to influence and those hard to influence
This typically takes around 0.5 days to do per day of workshop material.
3. High level blend design
Now the magic happens! Taking account of learner needs, project constraints and the 30+ forms of digital learning now available, identify how best to deliver each of the elements you’ve identified in the categorisation work you did in 2.
For example; there may be a high-risk skill that ideally you would teach via a complex digital scenario. With a constraint of getting something out quick; you might instead demo the skill on video, get people to role play it in pairs on a video call, record and submit it for tutor feedback. The trick here is to pick digital learning approaches that fit within your project constraints.This typically takes around 0.5 days to do per day of workshop material.
4. Learning experience production and testing
Now produce and test the learning experiences that form the blend. This might include shooting and editing videos, creating infographics, recording screencasts, designing virtual classrooms, creating documents and digital interactions. The time for this will depend on the learning experiences you’ve included in your blend.
5. Deploy and evaluate
Start using your blend with learners but consider it a minimum viable product (MVP) or a version 1 to be iterated. Gather feedback from participants to look how you might improve it. Measure the impact that the blend is having and iterate until you see the result you need.This is ongoing. Typically the more quickly you launch the less user research you will have been able to do and the more you’ll need to iterate to get to the required impact.
In this way, with RAPID Next Generation Blended Learning you can develop and deploy an effective blend quickly and iterate it to get the required impact. WARNING: this does not remove the need for great learning design skills - however it will give your Learning Experience Designers a proven, efficient methodology to work within.