Evaluating Facebook and Twitter for e-Learning

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Facebook and Twitter. The two biggest social sites on the web at the moment (there’s also Google+, but that’s for the most part a wasteland analysts say). Chances are that you (and your spouse, mom, and perhaps dog) have an account on one or even both. But are they any good for anything else, besides getting in touch with friends, exchanging gossip and viewing holiday pictures, baby and pet snapshots, and celebrity status updates?

Specifically, are they any good for e-learning?

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Sneak peak: what’s in store for eFrontPro in 2015

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Sneak peak: what’s in store for eFrontPro in 2015

When Steve Jobs first introduced OS X he said it would be the foundation for the next ten years of Mac OS. While some classic Mac OS users complained about a few changes compared to how the old OS operated, OS X was proven not only a stable platform for Apple to build upon, but also something that brought in ten times as many users as Mac OS classic had.

eFrontPro is like our OS X.

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The Power of What Others are Doing

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Staring at the blank screen or sheet of paper is every creative’s nightmare. E-learning professionals are not far from writers and designers in this sense, as in most cases they need to start from scratch and build a program that will truly add value, be aesthetically pleasing and is in line with the learning objectives of a company.

The easiest way to fight creative block is to simply glance over to what others are doing and copy what seems to be working for them. John Cullum’s character in the film Kill Your Darlings declares, “There can be no creation before imitation.” This seems to ring true for most people trying to come up with a new product or idea and being lost in doubt or lack of creative spark.

Yes, it is tempting to imitate the success of another e-learning program and in some cases, when done within reason, copying design, style and presentation is not illegal. However, just in as many cases, bare imitation without first considering the audience and specific goals of the program tends to fire back.
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Better Participation Through Rewarding Users

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You’ve probably seen a horse trainer reward his horse with a cube of sugar after a successful performance of a new trick. This simple gesture holds the key to better engagement and participation in your e-learning courses.

Of course your users aren’t horses (except if you’re pioneering animal e-learning), but the principle, which behavior psychologists call “positive reinforcement”, still holds.

Users need to know they’re getting something out of this e-learning thing, and they need to be assured that they’re making progress. That’s important, because if users are not confident that they are making progress they tend to withdraw and see the course in a negative light.

There are several ways to go about rewarding users.
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How To Use E-Learning For Compliance Training

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If you are employed, you should know that there are certain rules and regulations governing both your workplace and the profession you are in. Some professions have more than others (financial institutions, for example, have stricter regulations due to their business of handling large sums of money), and sometimes these rules and regulations may be unclear or vague to the average worker.

This is why compliance training is necessary so that one doesn’t violate company policy (or even worse, the law). Compliance training also covers most liability of the employer; since the employee was trained on these responsibilities, it is part of his or her job to comply.

So how can one use e-learning so that compliance training can be fun and engaging instead of the rigid and uninteresting exercise that some employees make it out to be?

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A peak under eFront’s hood

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If you’re reading this you’re either evaluating eFront (or eFrontPro, our revamped, flagship product) or you have already joined the ranks of those who use it and love it. In either case, it might be interesting to take a look under the hood, and see what makes its engine tick: the technologies, APIs, programming libraries and tools we used in creating it.

Don’t worry, you won’t need a degree in programming to understand this post. We’ll just give you a high level description of what powers eFront, the software analogous of opening the hood of a Ferrari to take a peak at its engine; you don’t need to be mechanic to appreciate that. And in case you do have a degree in programming (or can hire someone who does) our software let’s you modify, enhance and alter whatever part of it you want to build the hot-rod of your dreams.

Let’s begin at the beginning.
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3 Use Cases For Integrating e-Learning In Your Business In 2015

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The holiday season. A time to dabble in festive home decoration, stuff socks with Santa’s presents, spend some quality time with the family, and make those life-changing “new year resolutions”.

We all make a few of those (“exercise more”, “learn Chinese”, etc), and we all fail to keep most of them. But why constrain your resolutions to personal things? Here’s a resolution for your business development: “integrate e-learning in my enterprise”.

Unlike most personal new year resolutions, this doesn’t take lots of self-control to achieve. With modern LMS platforms like eFront/eFrontPro being so accessible and easy to deploy and use, it’s actually a resolution you can implement in zero time and start seeing the benefits immediately. Take that, Chinese lessons!

As for what this benefits are, here are 3 use cases for integrating e-learning in your business in 2015:

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The Art And Science Of User Feedback

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Running a business, or any other social endeavor for that matter, is all about feedback. Especially in a competitive market such as e-learning, your options are mostly limited to adapt and improve (like Apple in the 00s) or perish (like AOL in the same decade).

Now, when it comes to feedback, there are three things that matter: getting it, “getting” it, and doing something with it. Which is exactly what we’re going to cover in this post.
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Building an e-Learning Course: Content Strategies and Considerations

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There’s a saying in the real estate industry that the three most important aspects of a real estate property is “location, location, location”. In e-learning those three aspects would be “content, content, content”.

All the fancy gizmos (augmented reality, gamification, interactive multimedia and the like) won’t help you if your content is not up to the task ― the task being helping your students learn and understand the course’s subject matter, of course.

The generic advice we gave in previous posts still holds: it should be clear and succinct, well structured and divided into the appropriate lessons (or “chapters”), and accompanied with relevant as opposed to decorative examples, illustrations and media.

Beyond that, we cannot tell you in detail about how to write or structure your content because it depends on the particular course you’re offering and what better suits it.

Instead, we’ll have a look at what you should include in your course, taking into account what modern LMS platforms offer. Some of the advice (such as the need to have lessons) are seemingly obvious, but bear with us, as we delve into some issues course creators face, that you might not have thought.
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eLearning For Sales Training

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Sales are hard. You have to know your market, and to know how to work the market. You have to know your customers, existing and potential. You have to know your leads, and how to follow up on them.

And, (this should go without saying, but you’d be surprised how often it doesn’t), you also have to know what you’re selling.

Factor in the constant changes to the market (new models, new trends, new fads, new technologies, new competitors) and the human element (talking to people and closing deals), and you’ll come to the same conclusion we began with: sales are hard.

The way we overcome the hard part in selling, is like we overcome the hard part in everything else, from learning how to program to speaking French: with training.

You have to keep your sales stuff up to date with the latest sales techniques, information about your products, the company policies and regulations, etc.

On the other hand, you also need to keep them selling, especially if you’re a smaller company that can’t afford to have employees off of work for too long, in order to attend seminars and such.

Time is money, and that’s nowhere truer than in sales.
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