One recurrent question here on the forums has to do with how to approach mobile learning design. I think that one type of navigation that can work really well on the iPad is the accordion navigation panel. So, inspired by a template created by David Fair some weeks ago, I have recreated that type of navigation by placing the tabs horizontally and by using some interface elements (bars, buttons and feedback box) that resemble iOS widgets.
As an instructional designer, I have had the opportunity to not only design online and face-to-face training programmes but also to evaluate eLearning courseware and suggest improvements in order to validate its relevance and effectiveness.
Storyboarding and sketching out ideas are indeed extremely useful techniques during iterative development processes. My favorite tool for designing eLearning storyboards and more recently, mLearning mockups is PowerPoint. So, I was thrilled to bits when RJ Jacquez pointed to me that there was a very interesting tool that I would definitely enjoy trying. Power Mockup is an application that leverages the design capabilities and the easy use of PowerPoint and allows designers to create software and websites wireframes. Since it makes it so easy to sketch out ideas I think it has great potential for designing eLearning and mLearning as well.
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Every time I design a course, I try to find new ways that help me present the content more effectively. Depending on the learners´ needs, the context and the information, I will approach my design with different tools, techniques or activities. I never use the same template or procedure twice because every learning experience is unique, so I´m never afraid of taking a completely new route (yes, even if it means to re-design everything from scratch) so long as it contributes to successfully achieving the overall learning goal.
It is not always easy to design a meaningful learning experience. In the same way, eLearning is not straight PowerPoint conversion, mLearning is not just eLearning on a mobile device. When it comes to mLearning, it is necessary to completely rethink “our approach to instructional design, graphic design, user experience and information presentation” (Float Mobile Learning, 2010) and make decisions from the learner´s point of view more than ever before. Why? Because mLearning experiences reach the learner at the exact moment when the information is needed and within the specific context where the knowledge will be applied, and this can change the way the learner interacts and perceives the content that is being presented.
In our first podcast in Spanish, “Esta semana en el aprendizaje móvil Episodio 1 : el nuevo iPad y su impacto en el aprendizaje móvil”, RJ Jacquez and I discussed the impact of the iPad’s characteristics on mLearning design and we agreed that, in order to effectively develop portable, spontaneous and context-aware knowledge, we need to concentrate on three fundamental aspects: immediacy, interactivity and immersion. These three aspects can help us to design learning for the ultimate mobile learner´s experience.
It has been a while since my last blogpost. Last month, I had the great honor of writing four guest posts on the topic of mLearning for ASTD. Furthermore, I have been studying hard to complete my postgraduate studies, which made me step aside from some other projects for a while.
Having said that, last week I came across a very interesting discussion on the eLearning Heroes site and I thought it would be a great opportunity for me to share with you my favorite tools for storyboarding.