As someone who purchases too many education and technology books every year, I’m anxious for other publishers to begin adopting similar models. I rarely read a tech book cover to cover but still glean a lot from most of them. Are you listening Pfeiffer? O’reilly?
I wonder how it would look if more corporate elearning courses offered similar choices?
We know from Clark & Mayer that courses targeted to novice users without a lot of prior knowledge are best designed with higher program control. This means the course follows a more rigid, prescribed path where the learner is essentially “led” through the course or module.
The idea is that novice learners will benefit from being presented the “whole picture” rather than choosing the content they “think” they need. Research validates this and I can live it.
But how much of our corporate elearning is of such complexity that it requires those formats? Does a Level 100 Workplace Harassment course really require such a deep knowledge base that users couldn’t view “Quid Pro Quo” before “Hostile Work Environment”?
Too often it seems Training and its learners are less aligned then they could be. I’ve been on both sides of the fence. I’ve consulted with companies who insisted on “compliance mode” (program control) for their users and I’ve managed internal elearning departments where I’ve taken calls from business units pleading to allow their employees to be able to take “part of the course“.
As elearning designers we need to understand there are different types of training content and our course design should reflect those differences. Not all classroom training is the same (lecture, facilitation, lab) and not all elearning is the same, either.