Vive la Révolution: e-Learning 2.0 What does ... - Saffron Interactive
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Vive la Révolution: e-Learning 2.0 What does ... - Saffron Interactive

Certain demographics will be almost automatically interested. Younger generations of learners, already familiarwith social network websites, will have no problem understanding or adapting to an e-learning social network.Indeed, many companies use a group on Facebook as an informal induction and online academic discussionforums, such as WebCT, are already a fi xture in some universities. But to sustain that initial interest and toattract older generations, there must be a real purpose behind the use of e-Learning 2.0.For some learning solutions, it may not be appropriate. For example, with a health and safety course, is therepractical benefi t in creating a forum for further discussion, for opinions to be exchanged? Health and safetyinvolves information that must be understood by learners straightaway, otherwise their safety is at risk. Addingnumerous other forms of communication could simply confuse matters with no worthwhile benefit gained.Even if the content is appropriate, SMEs may be unwilling to relinquish control of the content. While they may beable to see what learners are discussing, they cannot in any practical way control the learning. Can they be surethat the original objectives of the course are still being met? So it can’t fully replace more traditional e-learning,but rather should be used in conjunction with it, to enhance it, as part of a blended learning programme.So there are dangers and despite the revolution, e-Learning 2.0 isn’t going to provide learning professionals withall the answers. Without real benefi ts to its use, e-Learning 2.0 would be destined to become a footnote, ora foolish diversion from the business of learning. But those benefi ts are real and can add new possibilities towhat e-learning can do. The true value of e-Learning 2.0 is when it can be used to exploit a desire for personaldevelopment to fulfi l a business need. It then allows learners to take responsibility for their own ongoing learningin a manner that is truly interactive. Social change is here – the e-learning industry cannot ignore it.6 Advance, © Saffron Interactive 2008

Laura is an Instructional Designer at Saffron Interactivewhere she specialises in blended learning programmes.Projects that she has designed and led include those for:KPMG, Roche and Red Bull. She has also worked with BTand Microsoft on a range of projects.She is currently researching the possibilities new mediaoffers to training and business communications, of whichWeb 2.0 forms an important part.Before joining Saffron, Laura taught English as a foreignlanguage, both in the UK and abroad. She has a degree inEnglish and Linguistics from the University of Manchester.Laura can be contacted vialaura@saffroninteractive.comwww.saffroninteractive.comAdvance, © Saffron Interactive 20087

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