Monday, June 4

Big Question for June - Where are the Examples of eLearning?

One of the things that has always been somewhat surprising to me is that there seem to be relatively few examples of different kinds of eLearning available out there. So, this month I wanted to ask a slightly different kind of question that hopefully can produce something of value.

The Big Question is...

Where are the Examples of eLearning?

Please answer this question by posting to your own blog or commenting on this post.
(For further help in how to participate via blog posts, see the side bar.)

Points to Consider:
  • Please point us to all sorts of examples.
  • Good examples, bad examples are welcome.
  • Please give us a few thoughts of why you think this is an example that we should give some attention.

Val Evans Social Software Research Knowledge Sharing Case Studies 16-Jul-2007 13:25:50
Val Evans Social Software Research Teaching and Learning Case Studies 16-Jul-2007 13:20:36
e-Learning Tyro e-Learning Tyro e-Learning Demos 28-Jun-2007 23:29:45
Claudia Escribano LifeLongLearningLab Examples of E-Learning 27-Jun-2007 19:17:02
Gabe Anderson Articulate - Word of Mouth Blog Where are Examples of eLearning? Lots Right Here! 26-Jun-2007 11:30:51
Dave Lee eelearning exemplary elearning solutions 14-Jun-2007 13:43:59
Dave Lee eelearning what is a "good example"? 13-Jun-2007 00:00:00
Adele Lim learning & development LCB Big Q for June: Eg of e-Learning 11-Jun-2007 03:17:57
Tony Whittingham Fantastic Resources for Students The Power of Three 11-Jun-2007 02:37:24
Quintus Joubert eLearning Blog Where are the Examples of eLearning? 11-Jun-2007 12:50:52
Peter Isackson Learning Circuits Blog Example of eLearning 09-Jun-2007 10:33:33
Kevin Vaughan Flexible Learning Network Designing e-learning 09-Jun-2007 08:34:26
Karl M. Kapp Kapp Notes Show Me the Examples! ASTD Big Question for June 07-Jun-2007 14:41:56
Mark Frank Learning in Context Two examples of elearning 07-Jun-2007 02:26:24
Tony Karrer eLearning Technology Creating a Blog in Blogger 07-Jun-2007 07:04:40
Piotr elearning-20 Best Examples of eLearning 05-Jun-2007 11:06:22
Clark Aldrich Clark Aldrich's Blog: The Elements of Interactivity [Examples] of simulations: a dynamic list of entries with playable examples 05-Jun-2007 08:33:21


Clark Aldrich said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin Vaughan said...

Well I messed up with my link above... in any case this is what I wanted to share with you all.

Tony Karrer said...

Wow, these are great so far. I'm impressed.

Dave Lee said...


Don't worry about messing up the link in the form. I've got you covered.

your humble blogmeister

Unknown said...

Here is an elearning program based on the "Power of Three"....Wikis + Blogs + seems to work, check out the student blogs.
Tony Whittingham

Tony Karrer said...

I don't know if it's me, but it's refreshing to see the diversity of examples here.

Peter Isackson said...

I have to agree. Diversity is not only a wonderful thing... it's also natural. I've always wondered why the idea we have of "e-learning" had become such a stereotype. As a well-known admirer of "f-learning" (when you stop guessing what it is -- if you don't read till the end of this parenthesis -- I'll tell you: it's "flipchart learning"); as I say as a great admirer of f-learning I attribute part of its success to the fact that nobody tried to do a promotional launch of the word itself or claimed it would be the killer application of the future (with or without rounding errors).

Stuart Kruse said...

Hi all,

Apologies in advance, I'm not going to link to an example. But I do believe I have a relevant, related point to make.

One problem I encounter creating bespoke e-learning in industry is conservatism from our customers. When I look at the work of all of my competitors, we all produce an incredibly similar product. Companies like the status quo as it makes it very easy to compare 'apples with apples' and then make a choice on price and perhaps some simple, subjective things like interface design/'look and feel'. Most of the big companies purchasing e-learning in the UK create frameworks, and the way these are set-up almost guarantee conformity and mediocrity. I wrote a post on this many, many moons ago:

Mindful (a lurker)

Peter Isackson said...

Mindful learner,
That's a very good point. Not being an e-learning company or part of one, I wasn't aware of what economic processes might explain the uniformity and mediocrity of so much e-learning. My own take is that it reflects two phenomena: the degree of trivialisation of the status of learning in general (seen as an expedient rather than a source of productivity) and the worst reflexes of pervasive corporate culture, where depersonalisation and risk avoidance have become the twin pillars of decision-making.

All real learning -- meaning any learning that goes beyond the simple exposure to and partial assimilation of discretely formulated and wholly authorized information and official discourse -- must be personal and personalised to achieve productivity. That should be the starting point of any calculation of worth for a training event or a training product. But what is the reality? Not only is potential personal impact not considered as the starting point, but most often it is excluded from consideration as faith is placed in anonymous processes. This may seem paradoxical since we are all taught that management should be concerned above all with productivity and training should be seen as a specific means of increasing productivity. But when the overriding concern, particularly in HR, is risk-avoidance and when the ambient corporate culture secretly hopes that personality will be reducible to a faithful and efficient reflection of corporate identity, it’s unlikely that original and powerful training products or processes will be chosen.

Perhaps the strongest justification of “social learning” is that it’s a means of countering the mediocrity of other forms of learning, including e-learning, by giving some space to the personality. In an ideal world, training itself and training products would link with social learning and work towards the encouragement of originality, creativity and ultimately productivity. Alas, productivity has taken a back seat to “productivism” (aka efficient mediocrity, risk avoidance and conformism, a fundamentally anal reflex).

Stuart Kruse said...


Continuing your theme - I think another symptom of the situation you describe is the fact that all e-learning I have been asked to produce is for either beginners or experienced learners being presented with some new facts or information.

I have yet to come across a request to produce e-learning that will develop individuals beyond basic competence to real expertise. We all know in most organisations that each area has a number of 'stars' who's overall productivity far outweights those of the group. How fantastic if we could attempt to move the group to a matching level of ability. All the e-learning I have seen in the UK bespoke industry is simple knowledge that could easily be picked up on the job or transmitted from simple Electronic Support Materials. Much better to spend the money where the interactive possibilities of technology can really make an impact - giving learners practice and experience so they can perform at a much higher level. Basically, to cut a long story short, I'm kinda a really big fan of the simulation/learn by doing approaches of people like Clark and Roger Schank, etc


Tony Karrer said...

Peter and Mindful - this is a really good conversation and a very important point.

I've always been somewhat fascinated with all of our knowledgeable guess work around the blends that we choose for our eLearning solutions. And absolutely, we make lots of choices that echo back what the client expects to see. If they are asking for courseware, you had better have a really good reason not to offer them courseware.

I talked about this in What Clients Really Want.

Of course, we all know that there might be a marginal difference in providing content as an online reference (series of web pages) with a guide vs. creating courseware. There's often a big cost difference between simulation-based learning and more simple techniques - and it's often hard to justify the added cost - unless the client has that expectation at the start.

While theoretically, you could do an ROI analysis - no one believes the numbers - so it's educated guesswork.

In a few cases, we actually have the numbers, but that's rare and it's only in hindsight.

As you look at the diversity of what we can produce these days, this is a really important - but also really hard question.

Stuart Kruse said...

I feel there is a real problem that there is no single, credible professional body that can educate companies on these issues (well, not in the UK - I don't know if the US has anything). When customers hear these arguments from companies or 'consultants' or 'gurus' they have a natural suspicion and see it as a hidden attempt to sell to them.

We do have some excellent role models such as Clark and Jay, but these individuals are more valued in the ID community rather than recognised by business-people (at least none of the UK companies I talk to have heard of them; I'm hapy to be corrected).

I've found the ID community is actually rather guilty of preaching to the converted, i.e. to each other rather than making the bigger effort of taking our message to those who hold the purse strings. We also lack enough credible business examples showing the value of different approaches.

Plus, when it comes to training, business moves slowly. I've been involved in producing fairly standard courseware for around 10 years. It is only now that we are finding some customers receptive to the simulation/learn by doing message. These are customers either with a lot of money or involved in safety-critical areas that justify the expenditure. Over time, I'm sure we can reduce the cost and make the content-development process more painless and increase uptake. However, I see the process taking years, not months.

I'm probably wrong. I usually am....

Clark Aldrich said...

To quote the Sam Malone character from Cheers: "No one knows it, but I am quite famous!"

Stuart Kruse said...

hee hee Clark! "where everybody knows your name...." dum dee dum

It's just us dumb-asses in the UK! We've got no class ;0)


Stuart Kruse said...

Is that *really* the end of the conversation? We're not exactly setting the blogosphere alight with the energy and passion of our views....

And this is one of the *GOOD* blogs.. ;0)

I find something a little bit poignant about the world of ID people...


Anonymous said...

the Radwaste project in London is, I feel, a good example of e-learning. although maybe blended learning is a better description. It has been created by teachers, uses multimedia well and specifically addresses an issue studied at 14-16 in the UK curriculum and is free to use.

mike said...

This blog has some good elearning examples scattered throughout.

Unknown said...

Discussing e-learning it's impossible not to mention e-learning authoring tools. iSpring product line is what I use, especially I like iSpring Ultra.

Anonymous said...

Hello all,

I recently launched a new Web site ( e-learning professionals and moved all my blog posts from to the 'Blog' section inn my new Web site. You can find plenty of e-learning demos on

E-Learning Tyro