I was excited to discover an education institution focusing on learner centric applications as opposed to institution centric applications for lifelong learning. There is so much focus on institution centric applications, such as learning management systems (“LMS”), credentialing applications, and systems for education publishers; education and higher education is highly fragmented in their adoption of technologies.
I understand learning institutions need to control and verify learning objectives are achieved. They craft learning paths and provide credentials with their reputation on the line. I work extensively with representatives of these institutions, so get their steadfast commitment for quality control of their programs. So, the questions are: Is it possible to put learners in the ‘driver seat’ of their learning? Can we design applications focused on the decision-making of a learner?
There is some proposed value in this:
- Navigation. Access resources beyond the confines of an institution's applications.
- Self-Awareness. Know precisely what and how learning is taking place.
- Choice. Choose learning resources whenever possible.
- Exploration. Freedom to sample learning across subjects and disciplines.
- Achievement. Invest more time for higher level of achievements (if desired).
- Maturity. Willing to accept responsibility for learning.
According to a Pew Research survey, seventy-two percent of American adult workers say 'a lot' of responsibility falls on individuals to make sure that they have the right skills and education. So the questions are: What age or stage should a learner take responsibility? How does a learner bear the responsibility?
Always been a proponent of learner centric applications; I built this into each of the skills applications. In the design of the Skills-Based Approach smartphone app, the layout, functionality, and aesthetics are geared for the students. The app puts students in control of their skill sets and lets them manage their tasks, objectives, platforms, and credentials (referenced in stages). With learning labels, a primary objective is to always have students reading and interpreting the labels and then letting them choose what to do whenever possible. And let them navigate through a series of labels based on performance. And finally, with Skills Culture, keeping students aware of best practices in applying skills in their experiences.
Again, I understand the role of education institutions in guiding their students through their learning programs. The learning labels system includes a significant administrative interface for teachers, professors, and institutions to build their learning plans.
The above mentioned institution asked me to provide a video and brief description how my learning apps are learner centric for their MOOC. Here is my response:
Skills Label TM : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOrQLzhdjaY
A patent pending system to manage and track skills. The application is established after three years of work and two formal UI tests. Looking to get learning practitioners and publishers to define their curriculum, onboarding, and training programs with the learning labels technology. Once in place, the system gets students in K-16 and workers aware of what and how they are learning, gives them choice when possible, and incorporates personalized learning in three ways.
Skills Based Approach SM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9IN8Wde4fQ
Established in 2011, Skills-Based Approach is an effective methodology for lifelong learning. Students constantly cycle through four stages with an evolving skill set. A book was written in 2013 and a significant body of content released for this nationally and internationally recognized methodology. A smartphone application is designed to put students in the ‘driver seat’ of their learning.
Skills Culture SM : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xgzlNv5VzU
A growth mindset to lifelong learning. The ethos is: Every Experience is an Opportunity to Apply Skills. Looking to build a community where learning practitioners, students, and workers can share ideas among each other. Currently, there are more than 40,000 views and 65 blog posts. The goal is to get learners conscientous and 'in the moment' to apply skills properly in all experiences - work, learn, and play.