Things that made me say hmmmmm….

I have searched the internet tubes for resources that may help me in my quest to be an elearning professional.  What I have here are just a few of the sites that I consider useful.

In my position, we use Adobe products quite a bit including Captivate and Acrobat.  Sometimes, those programs can be a bit finicky to use so finding a community that can provide technical assistance and guidance is very helpful.  The Rapid eLearning blog at Adobe has some great resources and a large international community of educators with many years of experience in developing content.  The information can be slanted toward marketing the latest and greatest versions (they are really pushing Captivate 6 right now!), but with a little bit of digging you can find additional resources and ideas.

Hosted by Tom Kuhlman, the Rapid E-Learning Blog is a popular site for users of Articulate and their new Storyline program.  Tom has a way of presenting complex topics and ideas clearly and concisely.  Subscribing to his RSS feed and newsletter seems to constantly provide me with new resources and ideas.  He is also responsive to reader inputs and has created specific lessons to address posters questions.  My office has recently purchased both programs and I have had some time to explore the capabilities of each.  They are very impressive and make creating content from power point presentations extremely easy.  The programs are not perfect and require a computer with some muscle to run them, but overall they have proven to be a benefit in content creation.

The third blog I follow is Mind / Shift.  This blog curates a variety of educational websites, blogs, and technical news into an easy to read format.  The writing tends to focus on technology in the classroom and policies aimed at changing the way education is brought to students.  Not being a K-12 teacher myself, I read this blog in order to learn what the industry is struggling with and what issues are shared with my field.

One honorable mention I would like to make is the Learning Theories blog.  I stumbled upon this while researching answers to a discussion question.  I have not delved too deep into the site, but like what I see and the explanations of theories make more sense to me.

Some of these sites have a corporate feel, I know, but they still have good information that has forced me to explore issues further.  I recommend using these as starting points in your exploration of content creation.


6 thoughts on “Things that made me say hmmmmm….

  1. ewestmore

    Thanks for your great resources about navigating the world of Captivate and Articulate. Having been a user of both products, do you have a product review/preference for one over the other? I’m trying to see what the strengths and weaknesses are of each product so I can better make recommendations for my work. Thanks for your help.

    1. dstroup461 Post author

      I think both are good products. Captivate is a little more technical and allows more customization, with the trade off being sometimes the flash gets a little messed up and the program has to be rebooted. Save often!

      Articulate is a great product if you are really comfortable with powerpoint. We have just purchased studio 9 and storyline and both are very good products. Storyline has some issue with layout editing within the program so I would recommend your slides look the way you want them to look before importing into storyline. The interactions you can build with Engage are useful and with a little creativity you can do some great things.

      Both will allow you to do screen capture and have decent audio recording. Captivate does not integrate as smoothly with powerpoint as the Articulate package does. Both are struggling with HTML 5 if you plan on having your students use their iOS devices. Captivate is in beta for an HTML5 converter while Articulate has it built in and asks the student to download the viewer app on the iPhone.

      Probably more then you want to know. Thanks for asking!

  2. edumomblog

    Hi Don,
    Thanks for your resources. I looked through Mind/Shift and found the post titled “How Do We Define and Measure ‘Deeper’ Learning” This one was great and delved into how cognitive, intrapersonal, and interpersonal learning work together. It made me relate back to your more recent post on flipped classrooms. It seems to me that much deeper learning is taking place in the flipped classrooms, since the students are interacting so much with each other and learning hands-on with the experiments and research. The students are learning those intrapersonal and interpersonal skills, because they are not stuck silently listening to a lecture in class and then doing homework alone at home. This really struck a chord with me, since some of my students really struggle with communication and attention. They also often come to class with incomplete homework because they either didn’t understand or had no one to help them. It seems more likely to me that homework would be more efficient if it require knowledge intake rather than practice. With practice shifting to the classroom, other students and the teacher are available for help. I think it also offers more opportunity for discussion, which can help students connect other students’ ideas and opinions to the subject matter. Flipped classrooms is definitely something I am going to explore further.

    1. dstroup461 Post author

      I agree with you! The idea of rolling the lecture into homework and making the actual projects the class work is an effective use of instructor time. I don’t teach primary education, but I do work with students who come from a variety of backgrounds. Most are starting a new career and need to relate the new content with their existing knowledge base. We present the textbook material online then spend the classroom in skills labs and exercises. There is also time for students to quiz instructors and healthcare providers about their experiences which helps put things into context.

      Thank you for your comment!

    1. dstroup461 Post author

      Go Woodland Park! I have seen this before, but my recall was lacking. Thanks for reminding me. There is another teacher in Montana who actually did a TED talk about how he flipped his classroom:

      As you mentioned before, it’s a great concept with lots of potential. Thanks for the comments.


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