02 December 2019 | Martin Read
A professor has called for users' natural information selectivity to be taken into account when organisations are considering e-learning resources for workplace professionals.
Dr Itiel Dror of University College London said that too often those interacting with e-learning were not necessarily retaining the material.
"The key questions are, 'Do they follow it in the way you designed intended?' And do they engage with it?'"
"It is not what you teach but what the student learn that counts. That's the change in perspective needed," said Dr. Dror.
"The point is that people filter out information all the time. And if the brain doesn't register something, it obviously isn't going to remember it."
"Technology can be great in terms of brain-friendly learning, but if is not done well it can make it much worse by being too distracting."
It is crucial, said Itior, that learning is driven by the learners, not the technology. Too often it results in the straight transcribing of content from one medium to another rather than the proper adaptation of the learning resource to the new medium.
Dr. Dror was speaking at the launch of a new learning subscription service for employers from learning solutions provider International Workplace. Called Workplace DNA, the service uses machine learning to promote personalised learning. Students use the mobile-first service to access modules designed to be completed in around five minutes each.
A personalised 'score' is designed to 'degrade' over time should users not sustain their learning through such methods as a regular newsletter linking topical developments to the content library. The rate of degradation is linked to a student's performance in quizzes pinged to users through push messaging.
International Workplace MD David Sharp said that the Workplace DNA platform had been "five years in the making", being influenced by focus group feedback and the deployment of emerging mobile IT.
"We believe that by utilising the latest learning technologies, Workplace DNA provides an innovative learning solution to meet the needs of learners, their managers and their employers."
"We are not trying to teach people with workplace DNA. We think most people already have the knowledge - our role is about challenging behaviour and refreshing what people already know; getting you to engage and think differently about how you do things."
The aim, said Sharp, was to create an ecosystem able to encourage speed of deployment and user access and allow for the authoring, delivering and tracking of performance.
"The aim is to encourage ongoing engagement."