Learning Design tool bash in Valkenburg
Wilbert Kraan, CETIS staff
February 07, 2005

It's like the buses; you wait for one for ages, and then several come along at once. The IMS Learning Design specification was finalised in 2002, and about four implementations are getting ready now. A good time, then, to start playing around with them, exploring what they can do, and seeing whether they interoperate.

The event in Valkenburg, Holland, is organised by the educational technology expertise center (OTEC) of the Open University of the Netherlands, as part of the UNFOLD project. The OUNL was instrumental in designing the Learning Design (LD) specification, and is one of the founder members of the Valkenburg group of early LD developers and adopters. In a sense, the LD concept is returning to its roots.

Since those early days, the UNFOLD project has sprung up to form four communities of practice (CoPs) that have an interest in the design, practice, implementation and study of collaborative learning activities. Fifty members of the communities will come over to Valkenburg for the 'bash.

Once there, the plan is that system developers will be able to see what users make of them, and whether their stuff (editor or player) works with the others. Teachers should get a better idea of what all these new tools are actually capable of, and how you go about teaching with them. Instructional designers will have to opportunity to explore the far ends of what is feasible with the spec in practice at this stage. With the PhD students, there'll even be some learners there, albeit ones who're interested in the concept of learning design itself.

No full tally of tools present has been given yet, since some developers will be working furiously to deliver the final polish to their tools.

The event itself is already full, but several efforts will be made to disseminate the findings- including a joint CETIS Pedagogy forum and educational content SIG meeting on March 4th.


The program of the Valkenburg meeting
About the development program of the Open University of the Netherlands
A faq on the IMS-LD specification