Free handouts: Education technology trends in 2015

Jo NorburyJoanne is the content services manager at eWorks and a self-confessed e-learning geek. Specialising in learning solutions using digital technology, it is her job to stay up to date with the latest trends and innovations in this area. And that’s great – because then the rest of us can simply ask Jo. Here Jo shares key messages from her ACPET 2015 presentation on the latest emerging trends in digital learning, and – as promised – tells you where to access:
  1. An educational technology glossary of terms.
  2. An overview of commonly used software tools and applications used by vocational education and training (VET) teachers and trainers to deliver e-learning.
  3. A Totara 2.7 component overview.

How do you transform your learning delivery…

and get creative using educational technology? By staying up to date with emerging trends in digital learning. That means anything and everything from learning management to social learning, to mobility and accessibility, and voice, touch and gesture technology. But chances are you don’t have time to keep an eye on it all – there seems to be something new just about every day. How do we know which technologies are transient toys? Are they respected by educators and will any of them be around for the long-haul? What is everybody else doing? Most importantly, when is it safe to invest? These are just some of the questions that we considered at ACPET 2015.

The Internet of Things (IoT)

What a great turnout at the ACPET conference 2015. I was thrilled (and slightly terrified) to see that it was standing room only at my presentation on the latest emerging trends in digital learning. We started off by looking at the Internet of Things (IoT). The Internet of Things is made up of billions of smart devices using wireless technology to talk to each other. It is expected to grow from two billion objects in 2006 to 200 billion by 2020  – that’s around 26 smart objects for every human on the planet! So why all of these smart objects all of a sudden? Well, they give major industries the vital data they need to track inventory, manage machines, increase efficiency and save costs.

Flying cameras (aka drones)

Then we moved on to cameras more specifically, considering how technology has come such a long way, and that at the rate things are going we will soon be able to access cameras that have face recognition capabilities. And what about flying cameras – affordable, simple to fly drones? At around 800 dollars they are becoming far more affordable – there is even one in the latest Aldi (supermarket chain) catalogue. $99 gets you a drone with a camera that flies at a 50-meter distance. It only flies for seven minutes before you need to recharge, but even then – wow!

Point of view glasses

We also talked about point of view glasses, which allow you to film video and capture still images. These glasses are great for showcasing skills, creating point of view tutorial videos, recording assessment and more. Part of what makes them so great is that they are smart too (think IoT), so they record and Bluetooth the video to your device where you can use a smart video app (on an IOS devices I use YouTube’s Capture) to quickly edit and produce the video.

3D printers and holograms

What about 3D printers? Like flying cameras they are becoming more affordable. Imagine for a moment that instead of inkjet your printer prints with plastic dots that join together to form a 3D object. This isn’t sci-fi, it is actually coming to life – apparently Bunnings (hardware chain) will soon be selling them! This lead to holograms. One day, instead of sitting down to contact your students via phone or Skype or online forum, you could hologram into their lounge room. Yes, this could become reality. If Elvis, 37 years after his death, can perform a concert in Los Angeles (I’m not joking), it won’t be long before we can join in.

The 2015 Horizon Report

Assistive technology and student/user experience, including big data and what to do with it, are currently big trends according to the Horizon report of 2015, which states that Education is embarking on a … pursuit into data science with the aim of learner profiling, a process of gathering and analyzing large amounts of detail about individual student interactions in online learning activities. The report also suggests that a lack of comfort with digital strategies and how to use them to improve instruction is one of our greatest challenges. If you are a trainer or teacher it is important to remember that digital literacy is less about tools and more about thinking. If you make yourself just a little aware of what is out there, so that you can ask questions, things will become more affordable and easier to access, manage and use.

ACPET 2015 – been there, done that, here are the handouts

As promised we created a huge glossary of educational technology terms for 2015 for you, E-Standards for Training released the 2015 commonly used tools in VET, and we have also included an LMS component overview for Totara 2.7. Enjoy!

  1. An educational technology glossary of terms.
  2. An overview of commonly used software tools and applications used by vocational education and training (VET) teachers and trainers to deliver e-learning.
  3. A Totara 2.7 component overview.

Do you know of any similar documents that might be of interest to our readers? Do let us know

eWorks’ highlights and successes in 2014

Happy Holidays from eWorks

2014 has been a busy year for eWorks and it’s not surprising when you consider just some of what we’ve been up to…

We won! Deafness forum captioning award

eWorks and the E-standards Accessible HTML5 Video Player won the Deafness Forum of Australia’s online captioning and digital innovation award. Development and provision of the video player means that web-based video can be made accessible to hearing impaired, low-vision and compromised-mobility audiences at no extra cost.

Read more | Awards night and photos

VET Commons ready-made content channel launched

VET Commons is an easy way to locate existing learning resources that are relevant to vocational education and training. VET Commons currently contains over 15,000 resources and is continuously expanding to include new material from a variety of public and commercial publishers. There is also a large collection of useful free assets for building your own learning resource, such as images, videos, quizzes, case studies and more.

Read more

Five Technology innovation research projects published

Five Technology Innovations research projects were managed through the New Generation Technologies business activity, staffed by members of the eWorks team, to promote:

  • effective teaching in the 21st century
  • improvements in student completion rates
  • assessment of outcomes and student employability.

Read more

TVC Enterprise LMS for learning and development launched

TrainingVC Enterprise is an online solution specifically designed for learning and development management. This comprehensive LMS supports instructor-led training, self-paced e-learning, virtual classroom sessions and performance management among many other facilities.

TVC Enterprise flyer (PDF, 1.19 MB)

Accredited Consultant Program launched

eWorks Accredited Consultants are training, learning and development specialists that eWorks has selected to champion its learning solutions. The program launched this year with Accredited Consultant Kylie McKeon – a lover of the outdoors, the 70:20:10 framework, and everything e-learning.

Read more

National VET E-standards published

An updated set of technical standards for creating accessible and reusable e-learning content has been published for the vocational education and training (VET) sector. The annual e-standards review was undertaken by the E-standards for Training, staffed by members of the eWorks team.

Read more

eWorks nominated for prestigious e-learning excellence award

This year eWorks was nominated for an e-learning excellence award for some fantastic work the team did with the Australian Childhood Foundation. The project involved creating an online training system to support personnel working with children and young people who have experienced abuse and trauma. We didn’t quite win, but send our heartfelt congratulations to The Australian Children’s Television Foundation for winning the award in the community category for a brilliant little micro-documentary app.

Read more

My eWorks administrator portal released

My eWorks provides TrainingVC administrators with a single point of access to eWorks’ sites and services. Features of the portal, which will in time will be rolled out to all of eWorks’ clients, include:

  • Direct access to your TrainingVC sites
  • Access to Google Analytics
  • Status overview (active users, data usage)
  • Direct access to the Zone and the support desk.

Read more

ACPET, NVET and Learning@Work conferences sponsored

In August, September and October of this year eWorks proudly sponsored the ACPET, NVET and Learning@Work conferences respectively. The general feeling of the eWorks team members that attended these events was how lovely it was to hear positive feedback from people using our products and services. That’s what makes our jobs rewarding.

ACPET 2014 | NVET 2014 | Learning@Work

As the year draws to a close we would like to thank you for your continued support and business. The eWorks team wishes you and your loved ones a happy holiday season and all the best for the year ahead. We look forward to working with you in 2015.

eWorks finalist for eLearning Excellence Awards

Last week there was an extra buzz in the eWorks office after finding out that we are finalists for the 2014 eLearning Excellence Awards.

The annual eLearning Excellence Awards, hosted by the E-learning Industry Association of Victoria, recognise and celebrate the industry’s achievements in innovation and excellence, highlighting the top projects for the past year.

This year eWorks was nominated under the Community category, which recognises e-learning that is focused on a number of informal community situations such as health, self-education and skills development. The nomination was submitted based on some fantastic work the eWorks team did with the Australian Childhood Foundation, to create an online training system to support personnel working with children and young people who have experienced abuse and trauma.

What is the SMART Program?

The SMART (Strategies for Managing Abuse Related Trauma) program is a suite of online learning tools and modules that focus on supporting children and young people in a range of educational and other settings. It is a state-wide initiative funded by the South Australian Government Department of Education and Children’s Services, as part of the Keeping Them Safe child protection reform agenda. It seeks to enhance the capacity of school and early childhood personnel to effectively respond to the needs of children and young people who have experienced abuse and trauma.

The SMART online training program consists of ten e-learning modules, each of which contains a small knowledge check which must be successfully completed (with the user achieving a score of at least 50%) in order to advance to the next module. Once the user has successfully completed the course, a certificate of completion is provided.

Why online?

The online delivery format for the SMART online training program removes the geographic and time barriers often associated with nationwide delivery, as users are able to access the training modules at any time from an internet-enabled device. Consistent delivery of information is also ensured, as all users receive identical information through the online learning portal; something that cannot be guaranteed during face-to-face delivery. Once successfully completed, the e-learning modules are available for the learner to review and re-attempt as many times as they like through the online learning portal; providing a convenient knowledge base accessible from all internet-enabled devices. All eleven e-leaning modules were developed in HTML to enable functioning on mobile and tablet devices, while the theme of the online learning portal was also developed to be responsive to different screen sizes and devices.

And the uptake?

The uptake of the program has exceeded the initial expectations of the Australian Childhood Foundation, with research showing the online learning modules are reaching staff and professional community members that would otherwise not have had access to the SMART program in a purely face-to-face format. This has increased the breadth of participants far beyond its original intention. The online learning program has been utilised across Australia and internationally with consistent positive feedback.

The SMART program made it clear why traumatised children act like they do, and showed a way to help heal these damaged and vulnerable children. Very valuable.

eWorks is thrilled to have been involved in this hugely successful project and looks forward to the Gala Awards Dinner in November. In the meantime plans are coming together nicely for the Annual eLearning Showcase on 9 October, so if you’re planning on attending please come say hi and show your support during this very exciting time!

eWorks Accredited Consultant Program

Recently, we have been contacted by businesses wishing to re-sell our solutions. As a result, we are launching today the eWorks Accredited Consultant Program. This program will give businesses the flexibility to provide both ready-made and customized e-learning solutions to their customers.

eWorks is looking for consultants from small, medium or large companies, who already provide e-learning services, consultancy, products or solutions. The Program has been designed to provide e-learning consultants with everything they need to start delivering e-learning solutions. Comprehensive training on our products is included, along with full eWorks Accredited branding for our Accredited Consultants.

Our Accredited Consultants will be supported by the following opportunities:

  • Ability to resell the full spectrum of eWorks’ products and services
  • Free training and support for eWorks’ products and services
  • Listing on the eWorks website
  • Potential for exposure in eWorks’ social media channels
  • Potential for exposure in eLink, eWorks’ e-learning newsletter
  • Priority access to all eWorks events
  • Support for new business proposals and tender responses
  • Leads for new business opportunities from eWorks’ existing networks

The program will operate at three levels of commissions and arrangements, giving our Accredited Consultants the flexibility to refer opportunities to eWorks or to work with the client, using eWorks’ support and delivery services.

For more information on this exciting opportunity, contact Darcy Nicolson on 0411 787 172.