The Art of Needs Assessments in eLearning

In a previous series of articles about evaluating eLearning, I noted how important it is to align eLearning goals with organizational goals (see Level 4 Evaluation for eLearning: Results). The six steps involved in that process include clearly defining performance goals, identifying the tasks that will achieve the goal, determining learning needs, prioritizing learning needs, developing learning content and delivery method, and implementing and tracking results. In this article I will hone in on that third step of the process – Determine learning needs. Continue reading

eLearning Content Needs Great Writing

It’s easy to lose sight of some of the basics when it comes to creating optimal eLearning experiences for your business or organization. It’s even more surprising how often learning professionals forget the most basic starting point of effective eLearning: Great writing. Even when you think about the ubiquity of video content to convey powerful ideas, it’s worth remembering that most of those still start out with writing, whether that’s a script or just a story-board concept. Continue reading

Extending eLearning’s Reach with Snowball Sampling

There’s often a good deal of lag time before concepts that originate in the academic field make their way into the business world (and sometimes it goes vice versa as well). This is the way of snowball sampling in sociological research, and I think it can be applied in a way to extend the reach of your eLearning efforts. Continue reading

Predictive Analytics for eLearning

The full promise of Big Data has yet to reach its pinnacle, but the potential is definitely there. When Big Data is leveraged for making better decisions, part of that promise is fulfilled. When Big Data helps you more accurately predict the future for better decision-making in the present, then you know you’ve arrived to everything we want to get from it. Predictive analytics have begun making their way into the realm of talent management, and I think it’s worth exploring how they might inform eLearning efforts as well. Continue reading

Using Peer-to-Peer Approaches to Extend eLearning’s Reach

In a perfect world, learning professionals would design eLearning modules and courses which would then be made available, with everyone who should take it logging and completing the material. Needless to say, we live in a less-than-perfect world. And even when people do engage the eLearning material, the transfer rate of skills and knowledge is often abysmally low (to the tune of only 20%, according to some studies). When your eLearning efforts are meant to spark a significant level of organizational change, consider using peer-to-peer approaches to extend eLearning’s reach. Continue reading

The Importance of Combining Leading and Teaching

We expect a lot from our organizational leaders these days, from creating a compelling vision that employees can latch onto and accurately assessing the economic landscape to setting organizational culture and performance expectations. If all of that has happened at your organization, don’t think you can sit back and take it easy. Evidence is mounting that another key role leaders need to play is that of teacher, but not in the traditional sense you may be thinking. Continue reading

Level 4 Evaluation for eLearning: Results

The previous article in this series was about Level 3 of the Kirkpatrick Four-Levels Model, tracking the desired changes in behavior. In this final article, it’s time to see how the previous three levels of evaluation feed into Level 4, which is about business results. Continue reading

Level 3 Evaluation for eLearning: Behavior

In this series of articles about eLearning evaluation, I’m drawing upon Kirkpatrick’s Four-Levels Model to lay out the basics of what you should be accomplishing with your own efforts. Previous articles introduced the model (eLearning Evaluation: Kirkpatrick’s Four-Level Model), laid out more than 40 different sample questions across 7 different categories for Level 1 Evaluation (Level 1 Evaluation for eLearning: Reaction and More Questions for Level 1 eLearning Evaluation) to measure the audience reaction to your eLearning module or course, and gave you three best practices for Level 2 Evaluation of Learning (Level 2 Evaluation for eLearning: Learning). Now it’s time to tackle Level 3 Evaluation, which is all about behavior. Continue reading

Level 2 Evaluation for eLearning: Learning

In this series of articles about how to evaluate eLearning efforts, I’m making use of the classic Kirkpatrick Four-Levels Model originally developed for training evaluation because it’s also the perfect framework to use in the eLearning environment. The previous two articles dealt with Level 1 evaluation of the audience reaction to the eLearning course or module. Now it’s time to review the essentials of Level 2 Evaluation, which involves assessing the level of learning that took place. Continue reading

More Questions for Level 1 eLearning Evaluation

When you need to evaluate the effectiveness of your eLearning modules and courses, there’s no better place to start than the tried-and-true Four-Levels Model developed by Douglas Kirkpatrick. In my last article on this, Level 1 Evaluation for eLearning: Reaction, I presented 19 questions in the categories of learning objectives and content. Now it’s time to dive right in with many additional questions in several more categories so you have a pool of questions to choose from when designing your own Level 1 eLearning Evaluation tool. Continue reading