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Design for learning

Posted on August 06 2002 by Martyn Wild in reponse to The bottom line: effective learning versus low per unit cost.

Greenagel's article and Kraan's response, both miss something of what I feel should be central tenets in any view of effective elearning. I would argue strongly that:

1. Well designed (effective) elearning does not have to be expensive.
2. Content, resources and tasks are all different constructs and should be viewed as such in order to design effective learning online. Embedding content with tasks and/or resources leads to problems with sharing objects of learning, which in turn leads to unnecessarily high development costs and minimises opportunities for reuse.
3. Authentic elearning designs are appropriate for ALL elearning contexts, not just those that are skill or vocationally related.
4. By providing learners with greater responsibility for how they learn, makes for less expensive and more effective elearning designs.
5. Teachers and instructional designers are not the same thing, and it is simplistic in the extreme to think that teachers are necessarily good instructional designers (and vice versa). And then when one adds the notion of designing for the online environment, the design task becomes more complex and more specialised.
6. The concept of learning objects has nothing to do with 'bite sized learning'. Learning objects are not about learning, unless and until they are embedded as part of a holistic learning environment. In other words, learning objects only facilitate learning once they are part of a wholistic learning design.

... a few thoughts on an important topic...

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