I chose the Twenty Technologies to Transform Training workshop with Dr. Gary Woodill and Tom Crawford. I personally know Gary and love his take on eLearning, where it’s been and where it’s going. As such, I have been looking forward to this session.

Before lunch, each table was given a list of Emerging eLearning Links: 100 websites to illustrate new forms of online learning. As small groups, we were tasked with creating a top 5 list from this document list. These were to be what we thought have been the most disruptive or technologies that have had/will have the most impact. Based on the lists submitted from each table, here are the results from the group (parenthetical number represents how many times that technology was selected by a group).

Attendees’ Top Technologies

  1. Artificial Intelligence (7)
  2. Social Networking (5)
  3. Collaborative & Cooperative Learning (4)
  4. Immersive Environments (4)
  5. Open & Free Content (4)
  6. Wearable Computing (4)
  7. Avatars (3)
  8. Mashups & Web Services (3)
  9. Mobile Devices (3)
  10. Search Engines (3)
  11. Virtual Reality (3)
  12. Blogging (2)
  13. Communication (2)
  14. Experiential Learning (2)
  15. Games/Simulations (2)
  16. Haptics (2)
  17. Natural Language Processing (2)

Tom’s Top 10

  1. Situated Learning
  2. Simulations
  3. Visualizations
  4. Authoring Tools
  5. Search Engines
  6. Collaborative and Cooperative Learning
  7. Social Networking
  8. Communication Tools
  9. Social Bookmarking
  10. Wikis

Gary’s Top 10

  1. Visualizations
  2. Collaborative and Cooperative Learning
  3. Games
  4. Social Bookmarking
  5. Personalization
  6. Gesture and Facial Recognition
  7. Brain-Based Learning
  8. Location-Based Technologies
  9. Haptics
  10. Mashups and Web Services

I found it interesting that the group responses were so varied and not entirely in line with our two “experts.” Even more interesting to me was that our group had at least two on our top five list that did not make the consensus list, but did make the expert lists. Part of this seems to be due to differing definitions of eLearning and perhaps even different expectations regarding the workshop and even understandings/applications of the technologies discussed. Of course, none of this is surprising, just interesting.

In discussing some of the technologies, we also touched on:

  • ProtoSphere from Proton Media. It’s a bit of SecondLife type VR that is more learning focused and corporate ready (can plug in to a corporate LMS).
  • eLearning for Kids. An open-source directory of content for kids.
  • Codebaby has a study out on the use of avatars in eLearning.