If you accept that learning is the acquisition of knowledge or skills through study, experience or being taught; then by association, learning management must be about facilitating learning processes and the acquisition of knowledge and skills.
So in a world where once-stable platforms are shifting by the day, how does learning management need to change and adapt to a new environment?
To a world where terrorism threatens our daily security, technology is a 2-edged sword of opportunity and threat, global warming threatens our very existence and privacy is less important than social connection.
At Bluegem, we’re dealing with this question right now. We want to hear you views and understand what some of these changes mean for you. Help us design and build the learning management systems needed today.
How do these things impact learning management?
We probably wouldn't disagree that technology can have a profound impact on the management of learning. But you might reasonably argue that security, environment, and social media are content specific areas that have little or no impact on the management of learning. We would disagree. Here are some scenarios to consider.
One of the greatest threats to national security in the new world order is "radicalisation". Young vulnerable minds can be easily manipulated, particularly for those who already feel ostracised and powerless.
The lure of a powerful mission, demanding extraordinary bravery and attached to the promise of untold pleasures in the after-life can be irresistible. Now imagine the potential of covert eLearning to disseminate online terrorist training in that context. Identifying, reporting and blocking that type of online learning could and perhaps should be the responsibility of the Learning Management System.
We have child filters to protect children from pornographic material, why not filters to protect vulnerable young men from terrorist radicalisation programs. There's also the opportunity for an LMS to actively promote and prioritise proven-effective deradicalisation programs for potential student's who fit that profile, based on their search patterns and course interests.
The LMS detects that a person fitting the profile is searching for information and courses that suggest he may have been radicalised. Offer some search results that inform him about the dangers and techniques used in radicalisation, to offer tools and coping mechanisms to recognise and avoid being solicited.
There are many areas where Learning Management Systems could better support learning geared towards climate change and the environment. Education and training in this area is still very much a blank canvas and yet there are so many recycling, greening, solar, wind, tidal and geo-thermal initiatives being presented everyday.
LMSs that can offer new techniques in categorisation, content aggregation, industry focus groups, content ranking by relevance, integrating augmented reality information based on the presence of particular audio-visual triggers. That sounds technical! Putting it another way:
Imagine you've brought a block of land in the country and plan to build a home. You want to clear the land, but you suspect the property contains fauna and endangered animal habitats that you want to protect.
Using an LMS that supports augmented reality you could take a walk around the property, point your mobile camera at particular plants and get useful content to teach you what the plants are by name and characteristics, which plants need to be protected, which plants offer and important habitat for wild life, and your options.
Can they be moved to a more convenient location? What's the best and safest way to move them? and How should you protect any wild life that may be dependent on the habitat that you will modify?
In this role the LMS could be providing the AR support, collating available learning content to assist you, ranking it in terms of relevance to your GPS location.
Leaning integrated with effective social media can create a powerful mix. Learning Management solutions that employ social media technologies like Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn already provide powerful options for distribution and sharing of digital content, but they also provide informal discussion and forum groups that elevate individual learning to group learning.
Add to that gamification and the grey line that exists between entertainment and education, implement LMS technologies that support responsive gaming capability and we can begin to see how important a role the LMS plays in this new and exciting learning-playground.
As well as delivering high-end LMS solutions to meet the traditional, everyday challenges of our business, as forward thinking software vendors, the Bluegem team always has one eye gazing into the future so that we can be there with the right technologies when you need them.