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REN nyhetsbrev nr. 1, 2005

17. januar 2005
1: Medlemsmøte 9. februar 2005
2: Review of some learning theory
3: Podcasting
4: Nytt og nyttig
5: På kalenderen

I dette årets første nyhetsbrev ønsker vi dere alle et riktig godt og lærerikt år. Vi skal også  i år følge med på ulike arenaer og bringe nyheter gjennom våre faste nyhetsbrev og medlemsmøter. Vi er imidlertid avhengig av tilbakemeldinger og innspill fra dere, så hvis dere ønsker spesielle saker tatt opp, enten i nyhetsbrev eller som tema på medlemsmøter – så send oss noen ord.

1: Medlemsmøte 9. februar 2005

Vi ønsker velkommen til det første medlemsmøte I 2005. Møtet blir holdt på pedagogisk grunn på Universitetet i Oslo, i Helga Engs Hus – hvor Det Utdanningsvitenskapelige fakultet holder til. Programmet vil bli lagt ut på våre medlemssider etterhvert som det blir klart, og vi kan love spennende og gode foredrag innenfor overskriften “Samarbeid mellom Universitet og arbeidsliv”. Møtet holdes mellom 09.00 og 15.30 og påmelding gjøres til

2. Review of some learning theory

Last time I went into the basics of LMS/LCMS; this time I want to do a review of some learning theory.  I think it’s a nice end-of-year wrap-up, and it’s what we’re interested in at the end of the day, after all.  While there may be some redundancy with previous materials, I hope this can serve as a useful summary, you should look at the ideas you’ll find some perhaps idiosyncratic characterizations. 
The beginning point needs to be traditional Instructional Systems Design, as espoused by Robert Gagné and David Merrill. Gagné’s nine steps of instructional design ( has been the foundation for designing learning systems.  It’s a systematic statement of the elements for successful instruction, based upon empirical research and structured into a useful framework.
David Merrill has elaborated that through his initial Component Display Theory (  and now his ‘Second Generation Instructional Design) ID2 model (  He’s mapped to different levels of learning and different outcome requirements, and has begun thinking about how we make content technically efficient as well as effective for learning. Like Gagné’s work, it’s empirically based and well-structured. 
Keller’s added the motivational aspects through his ARCS model (  By considering Attention, Relevance, Confidence, and Satisfaction as components of learning, he helps ensure that the learners are engaged emotionally as well as mentally.
I like Charles Reigeluth’s Elaboration Theory ( as an extension of these two frameworks.  The major element focuses on providing a high-level context to ground the content, and then delve down deeper into the content.
Van Merriënboer has really taken instructional design into the practical dimension.  His 4C/ID (Four Component Instructional Design) model (klikk her--)  has a focus on separating out the component knowledge from the skills, and using learning sequences that successfully develop and integrate them. 
I think that there’s great value in the models from traditional instructional design approaches, but I also believe it’s been applied too much by rote.  Consequently, I think we have too much ‘cookie cutter’ content that follows a standard template without any true insight into learning.  One of the ways around this is to look at the approaches arising from the cognitive tradition. 
Collins & Brown’s Cognitive Apprenticeship ( is the best I can find) is the model I use as a base for designing.  I believe there’s a convergence happening from different backgrounds (behavioral, cognitive, social, etc) as they accommodate what really happens, and where they end up is where I think cognitive apprenticeship already is.  Their steps of modeling the performance, providing scaffolded practice, and then motivating reflection are some critical learning elements.  They emphasize meaningful tasks, and gradual development.
I also like David Jonassen’s focus on ‘constructivist’ learning environments (e.g., recognizing that you can’t force someone to learn, but rather the learners need to take ownership of the knowledge and construct their own interpretation.  While this may sometimes seem too time-consuming for corporate applications, recognize that when you get into domains beyond fixed or well-specified knowledge, cycles of practice and dialog are what will cement learning.
Roger Schank’s emphasis on designing learning experiences ( is very resonant for me.  He’s applied it to classroom instruction, college level (, and use the link for the white paper) and corporate training.  He emphasizes performance in context, with goals to motivate learning.
The above largely applies to formal learning, yet most evidence seems to suggest that only about 20% of meaningful organizational learning happens in formal learning (  The old Pareto (  ratio applies, where we’re spending 80% of our resources on 20% of the need!  So, who has guidance for other approaches? 
One of the gurus of the ways to structure learning to actually work is John Carroll.  His Minimalist Instruction approach ( has been very successful, and is particularly relevant when we start thinking about the display limitations of mobile devices, as well as contextual performance.
Of course, Gloria Gery has been a champion of delivering support to improve performance in context, through Performance Support Systems (  The notion of helping people perform before they’ve learned, and (less-emphasized in practice, but still relevant in theory) increasing their knowledge as they go along, is really important.
There’s more, some too new to point to.  Stuff about how the body learns certain things with channels other than the brain, and the value (and dangers) of immediate perceptual signals, and, well, there is still a ways to go.
There’s a rich suite of ways we can use this knowledge in designing more comprehensive and successful learning solutions.  We have to ensure we’re drawing from the latest research and practice, and seek to continually improve.  We have to be learners, as well as learning designers!
On a more personal note, I hope that in the coming year the world finds peaceful solutions and becomes a safer and happier place, and wish that the next year is the best yet for all of us!

3: Podcasting

Happy New Year!  Appropriately, eLearn Magazine ( has a column by Lisa Neal asking some elearning thought leaders their predictions for elearning in 2005.  Some very good thinking on tap!
Now, on to the news…
To start with, the trend du jour (in addition to wiki’s and blogs which I’ve talked about in the past) is podcasting (  Podcasting  involves downloading audio feeds into MP3 players for listening at any time (  It’s been compared to TiVo (the digital automatic television recording and replay system) for audio.  The educational value is in choosing what will be heard, and using otherwise dead time (e.g. driving) to listen to self-(or other-) chosen information.
This goes further: ReadItToMe ( will take your text documents, convert them to speech, and download them for listening!  Of course, it’s Mac OS X and Unix-derivatives only right now (the iPod started it after all), but if it doesn’t already exist, it will soon for PC’s as well.  I’ve heard an anecdote at the mlearning workshop we ran at Training Fall about an instructor who had his students’ assignments converted, listened to them while commuting, and used the iPod’s built in marking system (?) to grade them! 
And, as I am writing this, I come across a news article from today that says a student has developed an approach that combines RSS with a video server (BitTorrent) to support searching and downloading videos (,1412,66231,00.html)  Again, the knowledge value of simplifying the search for specific information is a counter to the research results that information workers spend 30% of their time looking for information, with only 50% success.
The point here is that if you give people simple but powerful tools, they’ll create solutions to meet their needs, a form of personalization.  In conjunction with extreme programming (XP;, which emphasizes lots of little iterations, you can get lots of traction in terms of developing usable solutions.  And web-based collaboration tools like blogs, threaded discussion lists, etc, provide ways for people to share their finds.  Thus, we’re seeing more emergent solutions, such as the success of open-source solutions. Extreme programming may sound, well, extreme, but it’s catching on for it’s customer-centric approach and focus on effectiveness. 
I’ve been eagerly following the latest product announcements coming out of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (e.g. and MacWorld (, both for insights and because I love toys.  There’s definitely continuing innovation in small, versatile devices.  Certain features sets reappear smaller, more robust, while new feature sets emerge.  Convergence of digital media, including audio, video, text, and more is coming.  Some convergences have yet to take off (e.g., but I think it’s more an issue of the right time or form-factor rather than the fundamental concept.  And with the increasing diversity, people can get more personalized.
One interesting development at the CES was the connection between entertainment and health, as exemplified by exercise machines tied to videogame controllers (e.g. Of course, the emergence of entertainment that’s good for you was predicted by Dan Gilmore, then a Darden Business School Fellow, who suggested it was the natural evolution from the experience economy, which superseded the information economy (here’s a PDF of the article:  I previously have argued that elearning folks are best primed to lead the charge (, with their background in learning and interactive design.  Are you ready? 

4: Nytt og nyttig

“e-Learning should be used strategically and not just as a tool that everybody uses”
Interview with Tony Bates, professor at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalonia ), by Segarra, David , content manager of the portal

Tony Bates thinks e-learning should be used selectively for new markets or specific pedagogical purposes, and he suggests a strategic approach to implementing e-learning.
Doctor Bates retired from the University of British Columbia (UBC), Canada, at the end of 2003, where he was director of Distance Education and Technology in the Continuing Studies Division. Now he is a part-time professor at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) in Barcelona. His responsibility at the UOC is to build up an e-learning research programme focused on three areas: policy, teaching in virtual environments, and web services and content management.

In this interview, Dr Bates gives us some firmly grounded opinions about many of the challenges the Universities are facing.

Workforce Development and Access to e-Learning
By Michelle Selinger, Executive adviser for education

Europe should build up the skills levels of its own workforce. This entails fulfilling several requirements, from identifying the relevant skills to providing individuals with the capability to acquire relevant knowledge.

ASTD's 2004 State of the Industry Report Released
ASTD’s annual review of trends in workplace learning and performance finds learning expenditures stable, and technology usage rising. View the press release and executive summary.

Bruk av data- og videospill for læring
Det finnes mange påstander og teorien om nytten av dataspill for læring. Dataspill kan stimulere brukere og hjelpe utviklingen av sosiale og kognitive egenskaper. Samtidig kan utstrakt bruk forsterke negative psykososiale tendenser, være vanedannende og ha helsemessige følger. Organisasjonen The Learning and Skills Development Agency har sammen med Ultralab gjort et grundig litteraturstudie om bruk av data og videospill for læring som vil være nyttig for utvikling av læringsmateriell. For mer info se rapporten på:
BETT 2005 og Learning Technologies 2005
Januar er en hektisk måned når det kommer til utstillinger og konferanser innen for læringsteknologi og e-læring i London. BETT 2005, som fokuserer på IKT-løsninger for utdanningssektoren på alle nivåer, går av stabelen 12.-15. januar 2005.  Etter det er Learning Technologies 2005 på kalenderen for 26.-27. januar 2005. Learning Technologies er både en utstilling og en konferanse som dekker alle aspekter innenfor organisasjonell læring og læringsteknologi. Både BETT og Learning Technologies er årlige arrangement som er godt besøkt. For mer info om de to arrangementene se: og

5: På kalenderen

REN medlemsmøte på Universitet i Oslo, 9. februar 2005.
Møtet holdes på Det Utdanningsvitenskaplige Fakultet i Helga Engs hus, Sem Sælandsvei 7 på Blinderen. Tema er samarbeid mellom Universitet og Arbeidsliv. Agenda vil komme senere, men vi kan love et spennende og interesant medlemsmøte.Påmelding til

Etikk - arbeidslivet & UiO
Tidspunkt:  Onsdag 26. januar 2005, kl. 12.00 – 15.00  
Sted: Auditorium 2, Georg Sverdrups hus (Universitetsbiblioteket på Blindern)  
Målgruppe:  Virksomheter og enkeltpersoner i offentlig og privat sektor samt fagmiljøer ved UiO  
Mål for konferansen:
- Kompetanseheving i etikk
- Invitere nye virksomheter og fagmiljø til samarbeid
- Belyse sammenhenger mellom forskning og praksis
- Formidle erfaringer fra studier og forskning

Økt salg og kundelojalitet? Kundeveiledning på Internett -
Har du lyst å vite mer om hvordan nettbasert kundeveiledning og opplæring kan brukes i e-handel, merkevarebygging, for mersalg og økt kundelojalitet? Torsdag 27. januar har du anledning til å høre mer om hvordan fremtredende foretak som blant annet Jotun, MAXBO og FotoKnudsen tenker om, planlegger med og anvender nettbasert kundeopplæring og veiledning. Seminaret arrangeres av Abelia Innovasjon i samarbeid med Sintef IKT. Velkommen!
Mer informasjon, program og påmelding

ASTD TechKnowledge® 2005
eTensify: Take eLearning to the next level and join us in Las Vegas, Nevada, February 2-4, 2004, for ASTD TechKnowledge® 2005, the industry’s leading conference and exposition. The Schedule Builder is now available on the Website

e-Learning and Knowledge Management Best Practices and Trends Symposium  
27 to 28 January 2005
San Diego, California, United States

International Conference on Information management in a knowledge society
21 to 25 February 2005
Mumbai, Maharastra, India, India

4th IASTED International Conference on Web-based Education - WBE 2005
21 to 23 February 2005
Grindelwald, Switzerland

COMET (Colaborating and Managing the Educational Uses of Technology)
17 March 2005
Ormskirk, Lancashire, United Kingdom

For mere informasjon ta kontakt med:
Veslemøy Barnes
Project Manager
Research and Educational Network (REN)
Innovation Norway
20 California Street 6th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94111-4833
Tel: +1 415 986 0770
Fax: +1 415 986 7875