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Can you really mix asynchronous eLearning with Web 2.0 Technologies?

In a previous post we discussed mashups. What about standard eLearning tools that are already in use such as Captivate, Lectora and Articulate? Can you really integrate usage of these tools with wikis, blogs, email, forums and RSS feeds? What would be the advantages?

One of the problems with asynchronous learning is that it is only as current as the completion date of the materials. It has the advantage of 24-7 availability and the disadvantage of losing relevancy over time.

The idea is that by incorporating a blog or RSS feed, you are keeping the materials more relevant and opening up new avenues of near real-time collaboration. While this might seem plausible at first glance, does it really solve the problem?

The reality is that the course development team (or individual) must first have an overall vision of how the pieces are going to work together. This is bigger than any single course. The mechanics are going to determine a natural collaborative flow of information.

Then you can integrate forums, wikis, blogs, and other web 2.0 technologies in to an environment that also houses your course. Whether this is an LMS or a standalone collaborative environment (social platform) is dependent on a given situation and what the client would want. Some LMS systems are already set up with a social platform as a subset. Many argue that this is not the intended function for an LMS.

What about incorporating voice chat, telephone conversations, teleconferencing or even Second Life?  These are true synchronous tools that are used in real-time. This provides a new dimension for otherwise stagnant asynchronous learning materials.

We have not fully embraced the impact of Web 2.0 technologies on learning, as changes are taking place too fast to quantify key metrics. But the culture is evolving and we must continue to view the future with wide open eyes, and try to figure out ways to mix synchronous with asynchronous. Evolving the culture of the client is definitely a consideration as well.

Posted in Blended Learning.


4 Responses

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  1. Donna Conklin says

    ILT is the only way to go!

  2. Jason Schmidt says

    Different strokes for different folks.

  3. Chuck Nealis says

    I agree Jason. It depends on the comfort level of the student with the delivery method, and some contents are better delivered via ILT than CBT.

  4. Dorothy says

    You put the lime in the cocnuot and drink the article up.



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