M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications
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M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications
A collection of all the tech comm topics I find most timely or helpful, with a special emphasis on e-learning and m-learning
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The MS-PTC Program and Adobe Systems, Inc : A Perfect Relationship

The MS-PTC Program and Adobe Systems, Inc : A Perfect Relationship | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Thanks to a new relationship with Adobe Systems, Inc., NJIT's MS in Professional and Technical Communication (MS-PTC) students will be able to access free-of-charge what…
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Adobe's TCS 4 is finally at NJIT for the MSPTC program! Okay, I admit that I had a little bit of something to do with that, as I made sure that the powers that be at Adobe knew that the MSPTC program didn't have these kinds of tools. I wish I had had them at my disposal during my graduate years, but I'm glad that the current and future students are going to learn on some of the leading tools of the trade! 

 

Be sure to read the article--I am friends with Professor Myre and Dr. Coppola, and I even know the student interviewed, Nancy Noe! She and I were classmates at the end of my run, and we met at the STC Summit last May! 

 

--techcommgeekmom

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Nintendo Wii production to cease 'soon,' at least in Japan

Nintendo Wii production to cease 'soon,' at least in Japan | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Manufacturing of the aging Wii game console will end "soon," Nintendo of Japan says. Kotaku spotted the note on a product page for the Wii on Nintendo's
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

It's sad to see the original Wii system seeing the end of the line, but it's important to note the impact this gaming system has had. Wii was one of the first to have wireless controllers to make gaming more personally interactive. It was also one of the first systems to have wi-fi and connect users with information like news, weather, movies and shopping through it. Over time, other services were added, and gamification took on a whole new level with the Wii. 

 

Since it was introduced, others have come out that can provide all the same services, and some even better (such as the Xbox), but the Wii still holds a place in the hearts of many.  In many special ed schools, it became a tool that could be used for rewards or even for learning balance and body control, and fine tuning motor skills in occupational therapy sessions. Wii brought gamification not just into people's homes, but into schools as well.  Over time, Xbox began to dominate as its Kinnect controller took this interactivity to a new level, but many still stuck with Wii because of its simplicity. 

 

So, farewell, original Wii system. I know it has served my family well. The newer Wii U is already on my son's Christmas list. Okay, he wants an Xbox 360 as well, but he's not going to get it. I told him that if he's going to upgrade a system (as he has an original Xbox inherited from his uncle), he had to choose one. He chose Wii U. It'll still play his legacy stuff, plus new stuff.  I will definitely be interested to see what the Wii U offers with its services. 

 

--techcommgeekmom

 

 

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Nasa plans 3D printer space launch

Nasa plans 3D printer space launch | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
US space agency Nasa announces it will launch a 3D printer into space next year to test the feasibility of making spare parts in zero-gravity.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I think this is a really interesting story, given my interest in 3D printing. Of course, I keep wondering how 3D printing can be done in zero gravity, but I suppose that's an issue for the NASA people, not me. Even so, this article shows that this type of technology is not going away, and that this will be another kind of technology that would be helpful for our children to start learning how to design and use. I'm a huge proponent of teaching 3D design and how to use a 3D printer in education as another tool of Ed Tech. 

--techcommgeekmom

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How I Hire: Adaptability and 5 Other Must-Haves

How I Hire: Adaptability and 5 Other Must-Haves | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
There is one core belief I’ve carried with me throughout my career: it’s all about the people. On multiple occasions, I’ve chosen one job over another because it would allow me to
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a really excellent article for job-searchers. This supports my philosophy of being a multi-specialist rather than focusing on only one aspect of a job. The information in this article is important for anyone looking for a job, but I find it especially important for technical communicators who are looking. Having that adaptability is what has allowed me to get positions and grow a position as well as grow myself. 

--techcommgeekmom

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5 Major Players in Distance Learning | LearnDash

5 Major Players in Distance Learning | LearnDash | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Nice article done by TechCommGeekMom.com guest blogger, Allie Cooper.

--techcommgeekmom

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What Happened to Employee Loyalty?

What Happened to Employee Loyalty? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I wrote a Q & A column advising a guy who was conflicted about his work obligations versus his commitments at home.This fellow's job put him in situations where on a moment's notice, he'd have to
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I could relate to this article too well. Having been a consultant or temp for the past five years, and not being able to find permanent work vs. contract work, the same still applies very often. The same expectations are made to do your duties and perform as if you are an employee, yet you don't even get the same benefits or treatment. Some would argue that some consultants make a lot of money, so they can afford to get their own benefits, but I have yet to find that to be true. In two out of three cases of my own, I was actually underpaid by half. But the treatment--even as someone who is technically a non-employee--is the same. We just have even more on the line, at least based on my own experiences. Sometimes we have good experiences, and sometimes we have not so good. Consultants/temps are always on the bottom of the totem pole, as it is. We put in the same work, but given less credit very often. Not always, but usually.  

This is definitely a must-read. It's a dynamic that all companies have to work on getting the right balance.

--techcommgeekmom 

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John Michel's curator insight, September 18, 2013 1:54 PM

It isn't difficult to earn the loyalty of our team members. We only need to be loyal, back.

Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, September 18, 2013 5:50 PM

A look at the research tells us that in the early 1980's companies began downsizing. This is a chicken and egg scenario. What loyalty disappeared first: employer or employee?

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How to Prep Your iDevice for iOS 7 | Gadget Lab | Wired.com

How to Prep Your iDevice for iOS 7 | Gadget Lab | Wired.com | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Apple's iOS 7 launches Wednesday. While you may be itching to get your fingers on the new OS, you'll want to take some time to make sure your device is 100 percent ready for this major software update.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

A bit of good advice, as some of us prepare for this new OS, and anticipate the new iPhone 5S and 5C...

--techcommgeekmom

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Disrupting the Diploma

Disrupting the Diploma | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
How updating the communication device known as a “diploma” will help students acquire the right skills and help companies hire the right talent.Every year, millions of Americans embark on
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I found this thanks to Adriane Hunt, who had posted it on LinkedIn. I think the author of the article makes a very good point, that with a changing economy and workplace, having a degree means different things to different people, and the curriculum of many "standardized" degrees of yesteryear don't cut it when looking for employment. I was fortunate that the program where I earned my Master's degree in technical communication is always trying to stay ahead of the game, as it tries to involve its students and alumni who are out in the field to provide some insight so the program can continue to be useful upon graduation. The issue of credentials and matching skills is going to be undergoing a revolution in the next few years, I think, and that's much of what this article talks about. I think making education more affordable and making sure that actual skills that can be used in the workplace are going to have a stronger emphasis going forward. 

 

I know that this is something that's very much on my mind, because I'm still debating whether to pursue another graduate certificate, another Master's degree, or perhaps even going for a PhD. My husband was supportive of the idea, but the first questions he had were why I wanted to do it, and what would I be able to achieve with the new credential once I had it? Would it help me with my career or find a specific kind of job that I wanted? Valid questions, and they are ones that are worth asking. This article definitely complimented that discussion--at least at my house. 

--techcommgeekmom

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The real reasons Apple's 64-bit A7 chip makes sense

The real reasons Apple's 64-bit A7 chip makes sense | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Don't swallow Apple's marketing lines that 64-bit chips magically run software faster than 32-bit relics. What the A7 in the iPhone 5S does do, though, is pave the way for Apple's long-term future. Read this article by Stephen Shankland on CNET News.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Interesting article about the real power and purpose of the new A7 microprocessors in the upcoming new iPhone 5S.

--techcommgeekmom

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The Khan Academy Takeover: Inside the New Classroom Revolution

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a really good article about the Khan Academy and its growth in the past year. I've been an advocate of this system--and similar systems--for a long time. I've benefitted from online learning like this. I remember in my grad school classes instances when professors would create videos similar to Khan Academy videos, and I would stop and rewind concepts many times, and watch over and over many times until I understood.

 

It'll be interesting to see how Khan Academy continues to create a standard for other online and mobile options for learning.

--techcommgeekmom 

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Twitter / martarauch: The ten life lessons from Steve ...

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Tech comm friend Marta Rauch posted this on Twitter, and it's a great article we should all read. I think I've learned some of these points the hard way...

--techcommgeekmom 

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Elmore Leonard's technical communication lesson

Elmore Leonard's technical communication lesson | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Last Tuesday it was announced that crime novelist Elmore Leonard had died. Some obituaries have described him as the nearest thing the US has to Charles Dickens. Despite such hyperbole, his 10 rule...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Great article by my online friend, Colum McAndrew. While I had never read any of Mr. Leonard's works, I have read his "10 Rules of Writing" in the last few days due to his passing, and I agree with Colum that this last one is something that struck me as well as a technical communicator. It's hard to decipher what those parts are that people tend to skip. Sometimes it's obvious. I thought it wise of Colum to mention analytics. This is something that I've often brought up when working on my own project at work. What pages are people going to most often? Are they getting the information they need? What's missing? What do we have too much information about? I know these things are what drive me when communicating a content strategy where I work, and it should be a driving force for everyone. Nice job, Colum!

--techcommgeekmom

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Dude, Where'd Ashton Learn to Speak Like That?

Dude, Where'd Ashton Learn to Speak Like That? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Ashton Kutcher started his acceptance speech for his Teen Choice Award on Sunday night joking that he’s the “old guy.” It was hard to tell whether the audience appreciated the joke
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I didn't see this event, but it seems well summarized here. This is the kind of message that I try to give to my tween son. I want him to be smart and thoughtful as he grows up, and I think Ashton Kutcher says it nicely here, according to the author of the artilce. If we could just get this message spread more to the kids out there...

--techcommgeekmom

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How Common Core is Slowly Changing My Child

How Common Core is Slowly Changing My Child | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
A Letter to Commissioner King and the New York State Education Department:I have played your game for the past two years.  As an educator, I have created my teaching portfolio with enough evidence ...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a very compelling article about education in K-12 right now that everyone--parent and non-parent alike--should read. I've run into this very same problem with my own son. Granted, my son has Asperger's, but even so, he's a very smart boy with some learning difficulties. He feels very defeated at his special education school, even though things are much more customized for him there than if he attended the neighborhood middle school he'd normally attend. 

 

Case in point: We just got the scores back from the NJ-ASK tests taken last year, which is the standardized tests they give the NJ kids in grades 3-8. My son fell in the "Partially Proficient" category, versus the "Proficient" and "Exceeds Proficiency" categories available. I figured he's score low in the "Proficient" category, so imagine my surprise when his scores didn't reflect that.  I called the school's curriculum supervisor--who happened to be his teacher last year--and asked if this was how most of the kids at his school did, or if this was a red flag of some sort, either in the instruction or something about him that we have to figure out. She told me that a huge portion of the test involved written responses, or to be more specific, phrases, sentences, and even paragraphs.  As soon as she said that, it all made sense. You see, as incredibly smart as my son is, one of his learning issues is that he has trouble with writing. There are no testing accomodations that allow him to dictate his answers to someone to write for him, or for him to use a keyboard to complete his testing. It ALL made sense after that.  The supervisor assured me that she knew how smart he was, and that his classwork did not reflect the same way as this NJ-ASK test. She said that if the school needed to perform any other kinds of standardized tests to help them gauge student progress, they used computerized tests (e-learning! m-learning!) instead for all the kids, as it was less stress and easy for the kids to manage than these mandated tests. So, I was relieved that under the circumstances, the school didn't put much weight into them. 

 

Even so, my creative boy, who like the boy in the story is a wizard with Lego models and creates whole cities in Minecraft, feels like he's dumb. He's a lot smarter and more clever than some adults I know, and yet at 12 years old, he feels defeated already, and that he won't amount to anything. His dad and I work hard to help make his work easier to learn (his dad is an web LMS developer, and you all know my advocacy for e-learning and m-learning), and hopefully, somebody on high will get the message that will trickle down that we can't hold our kids to this standard. Yes, we need to have high expectations of all our children, but they are not test taking machines. They are people, and they each learn differently, and will contribute to the world differently.  

 

Hopefully, as technical communicators and ed tech professionals, we can help sway education back in the right direction. After all, that's a huge part of what e-learning and m-learning is all about. It's about personalizing the learning experience so all children can maximize their learning to their own potential. 

 

--techcommgeekmom

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WATCH: Emma Thompson Hunts Peter Rabbit

WATCH: Emma Thompson Hunts Peter Rabbit | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
It’s OK, this isn’t one of those videos where beloved childhood characters are given an adult makeover, and Bert and [...]
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Penguin Books has always had a good following among the academics and the true literature connaisseurs. But their social media marketing plan has taken an interesting twist, according to this article. It seems like a great social media and multimedia plan to get people interested in old classics. Very clever (at least to me)! Enjoy and read on. 
--techcommgeekmom 

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Villegas Views: The Stewardship of Technical Communication

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Do we have a responsibility as technical communicators to foster interest and understanding of our field? Read my entry for this month's Villegas Views in the STC Notebook to find out. 

--techcommgeekmom

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25 Smart Ways to Promote Your Latest Blog Post

25 Smart Ways to Promote Your Latest Blog Post | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I found this on Twitter via @careersherpa (aka Hannah Morgan). Good information! I'm going to have to try a few more of these methods. I didn't even know there were blogging communities out there!

--techcommgeekmom

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Word Wise: The Presumption Trap | TechWhirl

Word Wise: The Presumption Trap | TechWhirl | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Word Wise columnist Marcia Riefer Johnston discusses avoiding the presumption trap in writing, with a tale of the scholars and fish, and her own experience.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Another marvelous article by my friend, Marcia Riefer Johnston. I fall into this trap in one form of another often enough, I must admit. How about you?

--techcommgeekmom

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At the Intersection of Plain Language and Technical Communication

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Great article by guest blogger Karen Field Carroll. Plain language is something that we should all aspire to do! 

--techcommgeekmom

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Rescooped by Danielle M. Villegas from My posts on eLearning trends, tools and resources
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Interview With Mobile Learning Thought Leader Mayra Aixa Villar

Interview With Mobile Learning Thought Leader Mayra Aixa Villar | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
caption id=attachment_7910 align=alignleft width=138 Mayra Aixa Villar/caption

I had the opportunity to interview Mayra Aixa Villar, instructional designer and thought leader in the mobile lear

Via Mayra Aixa Villar
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Way to go, Mayra! Check out Mayra's feed on Twitter (@mayraaixavillar) or her ScoopIt feed. She always has excellent content. Glad to be her "amiga"! 

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Dumb Blogging Mistakes You’re Probably Making

Dumb Blogging Mistakes You’re Probably Making | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
We all make mistakes. You might even be making these dumb blogging mistakes. Why not take a look at find out?
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I know I've made some of these mistakes, but I do try to work at not making them. How about you?

--techcommgeekmom

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How To Write Compelling eLearning Content Without Being An Expert

How To Write Compelling eLearning Content Without Being An Expert | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
“ You don’t have to be an expert to craft effective eLearning content. You only have to understand the basics well and execute it.”
Via EDTECH@UTRGV
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Much of this follows the basic tenets of technical writing. Good advice! --techcommgeekmom
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A blogger's ultimate guide to avoid looking stupid: Punctuation [infographic]

A blogger's ultimate guide to avoid looking stupid: Punctuation [infographic] | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
As a university professor of English, my students moan and groan when I mention the topics of grammar and punctuation . The  reflexes of fear , dread, and disgust are guttural and instinctual. I...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Greetings, TechCommGeekMom readers! I am back from vacation, and ready to get back to work. As I spend today catching up with the backload of work from when I was away, check out this great article by Darin Hammond. I know I'm a stickler for proper punctuation, too, even if I make a few mistakes now and then. Great infographic here! Thanks, Darin!

--techcommgeekmom

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Villegas Views: Students Should Participate in STC Activities!

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Here's my latest entry for the STC Notebook. What do you think?

--techcommgeekmom

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The YouTube approach to learning Irish

The YouTube approach to learning Irish | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
The man behind YouTube hit songs ‘as Gaeilge’ believes he has discovered an effective teaching method
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

My cousin from Ireland--who happens to be an Ed Tech--posted this on her Facebook account. She's been posting several of these videos by this fellow over the last week or two. In many respects, this is not a new approach. Many foreign language programs use song to teach new languages, and this shows that Gaelic (or should I say Gaeilge) is still alive and well. I've always wanted to learn, but there's no practical use for it unless I go to my ancenstral lands someday. Still, these are a fun way to learn! (For me--I need to SEE the words too. I'm like that with English as well!)

Great use of digital and mobile media. 

--techcommgeekmom

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