In Support of Excellence

It's all about the students

LAMS: Learning Activity Management System

Articulate Studio ’13 … Hello Boys I’m Back!


In 2005-6 I introduced Articulate Studio Pro software to the teaching staff at the University of Adelaide and for years it was used to develop what I call Interactive Learning Modules (ILMs). Then the iPad revolution happened with the need for HTML5 and not Flash to run on the tablets and Studio Pro became tired and in need of an upgrade. About a year ago Articulate released a superb new software product called Storyline. There has been a lot of buzz about it and it has become really more than software now and I wrote a blog entry in Mar 2013 called “Articulate Storyline: More Than Software It’s An Ecosystem” where I listed a great many websites and resources to support creative development using this tool.

A few months ago Articulate released a major upgrade to their Studio suite of software, Presenter ‘13, Quizmaker ‘13 and Engage ‘13. The most exciting feature being they publish HTML5 tablet friendly output. I have been tracking closely all the interest in Storyline over the last year and was wondering why Articulate worked so hard on a new version of Studio Pro.

So when I needed to develop a very important learning module, the first with my own content in 5 years, I took the opportunity to use the newly released Articulate Studio 13 Pro  suite of software. I decided to push the envelope with pedagogy and use as many of the features to enhance learning as I could. I am impressed with what is possible and this post is about what I discovered. During the development I couldn’t help but think using this significantly upgraded software was sending a message to the elearning community a little like the classic memorable line from the Blockbuster movie Independence Day … “Hello boys I’m Back”!

Please visit this Interactive Learning Module (ILM) “CALLED to Instruct Them in the Practice” and explore the pedagogy … I think it is impressive and I hope it inspires you to try out the new Articulate Studio 13 software and include some of these strategies. I am not saying you can’t do it all in Storyline … just that if you use Studio 13 Pro with your PowerPoint, you can now build pedagogically strong interactive learning modules which run nicely on iPads. Here are some of the highlights:

  1. Learning Outcomes: I have to start with a clear definition of learning outcomes. This is not a special feature of the software but a must to get the best learning possible. Use Blooms Taxonomy, referring regularly to The Padagogy Wheel Learning Design Model and particularly the Grey Matter Grids mindsets.  This will be invaluable to you when thinking how to build excellent ILMs.
  2. Checkpoints: are the core architecture or backbone of an ILM. This module has four of them. When I develop an ILM I believe there should be no more than 10 minutes of audio delivered content (didactic one way lecture style) before a checkpoint. This is an interaction and most often is knowledge checking using formative assessment,  although it could be data mining with a survey or even an Engage style interaction.
  3. Teacher Bio and Email Link: Teaching using ILMs is always better in team and the teacher information can be changed by slide so learning can connect with the person actually doing the teaching. Email is a click away. Also you can build learning community by including a welcome video.
  4. How To Use The Module: I have used another Engage interaction to build a pop up interactive graphic. It is accessed from the tool bar top right hand corner. Its role is to give students an understanding of the Articulate interface environment and the learning benefits of using the features to the best advantage. Each new ILM will have a customized “How to” interface.
  5. Glossary: This has 430+ terms but more will be added later. It is accessible from the top right hand tool bar and is a global resource. I have also listed the Top 100 eLearning Tools for the current year as voted by eLearning professionals around the world. Each one with a link to an introductory webpage of its use in learning and teaching. Hopefully this will encourage people to explore the elearning landscape looking for better ways.
  6. Resources List: This feature is designed to upload documents that can be accessed by the learners. This is particularly useful for the text of scripts of the module voiceover and increases accessibility.
  7. Notes: I have also included the text of the voiceover in the notes area of each slide and included the text from each slide. Learners often find this helpful to read as the sound plays.
  8. Search Function: Having text notes enables the software to search not only all words on slides but the audio script as well. i.e. learners can search for a term the teacher actually said and it will pull up the slide with audio. This is a “biggie” as students/learners are not restricted to linear access and can find specific terms and concepts being taught – at least within a 2-3 minute slide audio. This benefit more than justifies scripting (committing to written text) what the teacher/facilitator says on the voice over.
  9. Resume Alert: This is a useful feature and you can use it to ask learners to take a break or carry out a task independent of the module and they can pick up the content where they left off.
  10. Embedded YouTube Videos: Video is playing an ever increasing role in Learning and Teaching and being able to embed directly into the module and use media streaming is so much more efficient. How to do this in Presenter’13 can be seen here
  11. Engage Interactions: Three different interactive models and diagrams from the Engage ’13 were used. The main clickable circle diagram to describe the Centre concept on frame/slide 23 and the Glossary and How to diagram from the top tool bar. Engage ’13 has 20 different interactions.
  12. Formative Smart Game: A good investment to add some creative resources to your module development is a subscription to the eLearning Brothers Library. They have hundreds of cut out figures and templates for Studio ’13 including Quizmaker ‘13 templates. The World Race metaphor lends itself well to increase learner engagement to a formative assessment.
  13. Formative Quiz: The quiz on slide 20 forward was made in Quizmaker ’13 without a template. It is a very powerful quiz engine with many ways to increase engagement. Using cutout figures in different poses really helps.
  14. Instant Feedback: These interactive quizzes can give instant feedback to the choices and teachers can really support the learning with quality feedback – even to the wrong choices.
  15. Required Completion: You can set the quiz so the learner has to complete it before moving on. It does help learners stay on task.
  16. Online Survey + Video: This was a first and quite an “ah ha”. I realized you could embed a web object (any thing you can access from a browser) in the middle of a Quizmaker quiz.  So the idea of putting an online survey mining data back to Survey Monkey is a great idea. Then I learnt you could embed YouTube Videos in Survey Monkey quizzes as well. Finally I discovered you could alter the embed code and clip a section out of a longer video. Important stuff because other methods use flash and won’t work on an iPad, The pedagogy I used works well on any device and now you can use video clips as discussion starters or part of assessment questions increasing engagement.
  17. Grading can be set: All the grading is adjustable within Quizmaker ‘13
  18. Built in Evaluation: Using an online survey as an evaluation to be completed at the time the learner is doing the module is an advantage.

There was a lot of work to develop this ILM using the features I have described above but I consider it worth it. I am extremely happy with V1 of this module. Yes I will change it further, I consider any ILM to be like software with versions – continually improving.

My Conclusions and Lessons Learnt: I believe if you use PowerPoint and are very comfortable with it and the majority of your teaching is linear i.e. not simulations or scenario based learning then Articulate Studio ’13 Pro is the better choice for you than Storyline. If you are planning a lot of simulations requiring the branching feature then Storyline may be a better choice. You can do a lot more customizing in Storyline providing there is a little bit of the nerd aka programmer in you. However if you are a time poor overworked academic wanting to create stronger pedagogy with the minimum of new stuff to learn, then Articulate Studio ’13 will be an easier take up.

I am planning to use multiple modules similar to the one described in this post as the backbone of a course embedded with other activities into learning sequences managed by LAMS.  This will create more engagement, a better student experience and improved learning outcomes for the courses.

I have a Dream: Because student feedback from assessments can be exported from Quizmaker quizzes in the TinCan API  (the latest SCORM standard) I want to build effective elearning course/s to run from a WordPress website using a new plugin called Learndash.  This is low cost, flexible and a LMS for the rest of us.

I hope this has been a help to you and I invite you to look at the Pedagogy in action in the module itself by visiting “CALLED to Instruct Them in the Practice”.  Contact me directly if you would like to know more of the “how to’s”.

In Support of Excellence
Allan Carrington

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Course design … it’s flipping different!

In the previous episode of our podcast, Linda’s final challenge of “How does technology enhance learning?” set off a chain reaction in thinking.  It went something like this:  OK what are we trying to enhance?  We are talking about learning  within the framework of an experience or course. What sort of course? We are calling it a “21st century technology enhanced learning course”.  Now this course could be completely online with remote cohort or completely face-to-face or a mixture of both.  Then the question I (Allan) get asked most over the last 10 years came to mind, “How do I build an online course, how do I use technology in my teaching?”  This led to the development of a new presentation I have called “A Flipping Better Way to Learn”.  The presentation we hope will help answer these questions.

In today’s episode we start with curriculum design and as we unpack the process which we think you will agree …. is flipping different.  Different in that we start at the end and reengineer backwards from the articulated description of the graduate through the process of transformation.  The traditional place to start with a course is the body of knowledge. Sometimes via a textbook and sometimes via the gathered knowledge and experience of the teacher.  In this episode we suggest that is the wrong place to start to design a course.

Allan Carrington and Linda WestphalenWe unpack a five step process beginning with Graduate attributes …. what do we want our graduate to look like, be like, behave like, and think like. Next comes the learning outcomes of the course  what do we want to achieve from this learning experience to help the graduate to look like our exemplar.  Next we must ask ourselves, how do we know they (the graduates of this course) fit this description … so third out of the gate is assessment.  We talk about why it needs to authentic and what does that mean.

Number four on the list is the “doing stuff” … the learning activities.  This is to prepare the student so they are ready for the assessments and so they can get the most out of them. That’s the formative part.  Now this brings us to point number five …. the content.

Some may think this is strange that content is last – but it is all about context.  When the first four pillars are in place content then is fitted in where and when it is needed and the teacher has control of his/her “anupholsteraphobia” To understand that you will have to look at the presentation at 6.04 mins  :-)

“A Flipping Better Way to Learn” is the launch pad for a lot more.  From many of the individual slides you can dig down to workshops or complete seminars.  We will be doing more podcast episodes to help build better Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) courses.  Please use the comments on this blog to join in the conversation.

Allan and Linda

Podcast Episode:

Online Resources of interest:

  • Seminar Handout for “A Flipping Better Way to Learn” a 19 page pdf with note taking space and three slides to view
  • An Online Slideshow of “A Flipping Better Way to Learn” This slide takes longer download but user can advance slides at will. Please note there is no audio narration included, the slideshow is designed to be used during a seminar.
  • Graduate Attributes – Spin or Education? A podcast episode recorded with Simon Walker from the University of Greenwich in the UK. Simon talks about the University of Greenwich Graduate Attributes long term initiative which started in 2009 to develop academic skills and framework and to push this into a pedagogical framework.  A great deal of research and a couple of years later the university believes their graduates are about good scholarship and independent thinking they are about confident and distinctive students always learning and always developing with creativity at it’s core.
  • What Does a Xxxxxx Graduate Look Like?    This episode preceded my trip to the USA looking at transformative education The students should be included in developing graduate attributes.

Slideshow: A Flipping Better Way to Learn

 

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The Best Professional Learning Experience of My Career

Thats quite a claim for someone who has experienced as many learning and teaching conferences as I have and interviewed and learnt from 200+ thought leaders in Higher Education for our podcast programme over the years. When I was selected by Apple for the Apple Distinguished Educator’s Global Institute in Cork Ireland in July 2012 I never anticipated what a mind expanding event the entire experience would be. I was thrilled to be one of the 234 ADEs chosen from the 600 applicants and to have the funds to travel from my university award prize money. More of this experience below,but let’s start at the real beginning of the learning experience

Cork minus Four Weeks: About 1995 one of the first pieces of online education jargon I learned was “click brick and click” The idea of starting a learning experience online with the click of a mouse, then meeting  face-to-face (the brick), then continue back online with more mouse clicks.  It is the concept that influenced the development of blended learning. However I have never really seen it work as effectively as I did with the build up to Cork.  A month before the event we started using BaseCamp an online project management tool and putting into practice Challenge Based Learning.  We had four big ideas presented and all 234 of us entered into online community discussion to identify the essential  questions.  The discussion forums were reflective, mind expanding and very active. By the time we arrived in Ireland we had all chosen one of those big ideas areas we were interested in.  It was in these communities around a Big Idea where we split into small working groups for the week to define our challenges and make our pitch i.e. presentations.

For years when I travel internationally I do what I call a network crawl where I visit people/institutions with which I have contact, to learn from them and teach into them.  This trip to the UK was going to be no different. I contacted some colleagues I have met at some of those conferences, and asked would they like to meet and would they like me to talk about iPads. I never expected the response.  Five universities in three countries asked for seven Padagogy Seminars and extra meetings about LAMS. Wow I thought I had better upgrade the iPad seminars we (Ian Green from Adelaide and I) have presented to over 600 participants in Adelaide and elsewhere in Australia.

The Padagogy WheelSeminar Upgrade: I started with the skeleton of what we did and rebuilt it from the ground up using Keynote as the guiding presentation tool. The seminars by necessity are App centric and because not everyone has an iPad and if they do, nor the same apps the seminars need to be show and tell.  Their main function is to present a selection of apps that can be used for L&T.  I wanted more than this so I looked to the most well know learning model around the Bloom’s Taxonomy.  During the research I found all the great work people have done with Blooms and technology. However I had a interesting new idea of mapping iPad apps to the cognitive domain of the taxonomy and using the Taxonomy Wheel The Padagogy Wheel … it’s a Bloomin’ Better Way  to Teach was born. I also identified the need for a third more hands on workshop I will call PADAGOGY 301 which is under development targeted to a more specific audience.

By Popular Demand: I have learnt from the responses in Padagogy workshops, that academics are very interested in Simon Smith’s e-assessment system of marking assignments. I knew I would get heaps of questions from the floor in Singapore and the UK so I recorded a podcast episode with Simon. Quality Feedback: It’s all about the Students. explains more about this innovative e-assessment  workflow using iPads. I mention this in Padagogy 201 and now there is a resource for people wanting more. Its a total win/win for all stakeholders. The teachers save significant time and can enrich the feedback and the students reap the benefit of more personalised feedback.

Let the Games Begin - First Stop Singapore: The time in Singapore was very productive with four workshops/seminars well attended at the new Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine at the Nanyang Technological University.  It is an exciting new joint medical school by Imperial College London and NTU they are developing a very innovative curriculum using LAMS and iPads. The “Padagogy Wheel” created quite a buzz. I presented each of these seminars twice in two days

PADAGOGY 101 What’s all the fuss about iPads in HE: This is an introduction to the iPad and contains reference to 29 iPad Apps from Document Readers to Project Management and links to 12 Video tutorials

PADAGOGY 201 It’s a Bloomin’ Better Way to Teach: This seminar gives ideas of the latest use of the Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy and how the iPad can serve the pedagogy. It has reference to 62 apps with 18 video based tutorials.

I had a great interview with Paul Gagnon Director of eLearning at Lee Kong Chian. Collaborative Learning … What No Lectures!: is about how they are taking Team Based Learning and adapting the pedagogy to use iPads and LAMS.

The London Bridge ready for the OlympicsNext Stop London and a trip down the River Thames: This was a busy time with visits to four universities, but what a way to start, visiting the place where time starts and stops … Greenwich.  Simon Walker head of the EDU at Greenwich University had invited me to meet and talk LAMS.  When I got there I discovered they were doing some ground breaking work on Graduate Attributes. In the podcast episode Graduate Attributes – Spin or Education Simon talks about the long term initiative the University has to develop their academic skills and framework and push this into a pedagogical framework. How they involve the students and the tools they have developed is worth reflection.

Kingston University M25LTG:  When invited to present at this event while in London, I had no idea what that meant.  We caught the tube and some buses and eventually ended up at Kingston University for the M25 (thats the Motorway) Learning with Technology Users Group. A innovative users group of LT professionals from the University College Londondifferent universities across the wider London area.  Note to self – we need to start this in Adelaide South Australia. It was also great to meet Dr Ian Green my fellow ADE from the University of Adelaide while in London – it was unexpected. He joined me in the rest of the visits and seminars.

Blended PADAGOGY 201 and 101 seminars: were needed at London University and the University College London:     Tim Neumann a colleague and good friend from the London Knowledge Lab had organised a 2 hour iPad Seminar at London and another Australian colleague who works for UCL organised one there.  Both were well attended and Ian and I did our joint presentation as we always do. The response was very positive.

ADE Cork Day 3Transforming global education: (and learning a bit of Irish) reads the tee shirt we received on our arrival in Cork. Thus began an incredible week of professional learning managed by Apple but the real learning happened in the small groups.  The video at the start of this blog entry gives you an insight of what it was like and the visual journey is stunning thanks to the great photos that were taken there and shared by Daniel Woo of the University of NSW.  As the saying goes “It ain’t over ’til it’s over!”  Everyone who attended the event has committed to work to an October deadline to publish content on the ADE iTunesU. There will be significant curriculum published for the developing of teachers as an outcome of Cork.

Finally Scotland and The University of Edinburgh:  This was actually an email type I call “a G’day email” I literally looked up the university website ans found the team running a post graduate elearning course ans said “G’day I’m visiting Edinburgh and Edinburgh from the castlewondered if ….” four or five emails later we had set up a PADAGOGY201 workshop that filled up with registrations in 24 hours from announcement and had a waiting list. They said it was the fastest response they have ever had to an elearning event.

We had a successful  seminar and the next day started the marathon journey home. Edinburgh to London… changed planes.  London to Singapore overnight no sleep …. thank goodness 4 hours sleep in the airport hotel then back on the A380 now that’s a plane and overnight to Sydney still no sleep… then change planes again and home to Adelaide. Over 48 hours travelling… but it was worth it.

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Collaborative Learning … What No Lectures!


Team Based Learning: Group Work that Works from UT Austin CTL on Vimeo.
Paul Gagnon PhotoPaul Gagnon is the Director of eLearning of the new Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.  In this podcast episode Paul talks about their innovative approach to medical education, based on the concepts of Team Based Learning  which is gaining traction around the world, especially in Medical Science education. However Lee Kong Chian is taking it to the next level.  They are moving away from the paper based approach and going mobile. It is exciting to see how they will be using LAMS and iPads to connect with the students, engage them and sustain that engagement.  They are calling it Collaborative Learning and believe it will address the challenge that medical students need to have mastered the fundamental foundational body of knowledge and that the teachers must be confident that they know what the students know, as well as what they don’t know. Paul shares how TBL has an advantage in this over Problem Based Learning.  Others in the Medical Education marketplace are very positive about what Lee Kong Chian is doing with technologically enhanced learning and how they are planning to immerse the students in the learning process.

Please listen to the audioboo interview and should you have further questions about TBL there is a great web resource at the Team Based Learning Collaborative.    Two of the really interesting things about the video above, from the University of Texas, is that it shows TBL is useful across faculties and it also helps improve engagement and learning  in large classes.  Any HE teacher with big classes should think seriously about this.

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