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I have written several blogs now on CPD and have received some good feedback. Following on from my post (How much CPD Training should you be doing)-   and the post with the Survey Results, I received some good feedback from Jerry Overton.

“I noticed a gap between the amount of training IT professionals think they should take and the amount they are actually able to take. I suppose there are many theories about why, but I speculate that it points to a problem with how training is usually structured.

I think there is a huge need for microcourses/microlearning — short (5 min -20 min) focused courses delivered via laptop, tablet, or phone. With microlearning, you can context switcheasier. You can also fit training into the gaps in your life rather than having to make gaps big enough to fit the training. You can take 20 mins while you are waiting for a meeting to start, or 5 minutes while you wait at the doctor’s office.

If training were easier to take and delivered better, we might see an increase in training hours.”

MicroLearning is not a new concept, but is an evolving area of learning and developing that is currently has and is being researched.

Microlearning deals with relatively small learning units and short-term learning activities. Generally, the term “microlearning” refers to micro-perspectives in the context of learning, education and training. More frequently, the term is used in the domain of e-learning and related fields in the sense of a new paradigmatic perspective on learning processes in mediated environments. – wikipedia

A paper called “The Design of MicroLearning Experiences:A Research Agenda(On MicroLearning)” by Silvia Gabrielli, Stephen Kimani, Tiziana Catarci details the main requirements of MicroLearning experiences as:

  • Highly Transferable
  • Easily available and user friendly
  • Persistent
  • Useful
  • Individual as well as shareable
  • Adaptable

The paper also places MicroLearning combining their ubiquitous emergence and life long duration with the ability to consume anywhere through mobile learning.

Types of Learning

(the figure is not the best res in the paper, but you get the point)

Microlearning deals with relatively small learning units and short-term learning activities. Generally, the term “microlearning” refers to micro-perspectives in the context of learning, education and training. More frequently, the term is used in the domain of e-learning and related fields in the sense of a new paradigmatic perspective on learning processes in mediated environments.

Another paper from a study “Micro Learning As Innovative Process of Knowledge Strategy” by Dr. Minimol Anil Job, Dr. Habil Slade Ogalo concludes that ”

Business survival today extensively depends on harvesting, acquiring, retaining and applying fifth or sixth generation knowledge skills and capabilities. In view of these factors micro learning is relied upon to provide strategic solutions which could help enterprise growth through sustained maintenance of knowledge assets by evaluating current and future knowledge gaps. Core knowledge skills achieved under micro learning are intended to enhance organization learning and performance productivity.

Two good examples of MicroLearning are

  • Skillport (Books 24x&)
  • BBC Bitesize

SkillPort have produced a number of 3-7 minute videos on leadership covering a range of topics within this area. each are focused and directed to a particular subject. This method could be applied to a number of subjects and topics.

The BBC has been producing MicroLearning for a while based on its Bitsize series of videos and texts. This platform provides learning and revision for those studying GCSE and School Subjects. Again these method could be applied to a number of subjects and topics.

The term MicroLearning my be new to some, however you may be MicroLearning already and not realising it. People who use Social Media will have carried out a form of MicroLearning reading small chunks of information in 140 Characters in the form of tweets from twitter. Filtering out the “Social Chatter” there are some good nuggets of information and learning tweeted on a daily basis.

How much MicroLearning have you done today?

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