When we were challenged in 2015, to describe how to meet the needs of modern learners in Cheshire, we dug into learning research and uncovered the common issues of the day. They all pointed toward a need for a fundamental change in what we see as our goal and how we get there. Our biggest insight was realizing that the instructional design industry was singularly focused on designing one thing—an deliverable that would close the capability gap. It might take the form of a classroom training program, an e-learning course, learning program, or a manual, but it is still just one element. Of course, often adds in a job aid or a link to additional content, but there isn’t enough strategic thinking behind such additions. Our traditional and current instructional design models.
We learned other things we weren’t expecting. Sure, they’re great tools, but they’re also three and four decades old! Even the changes has adopted more recently—like CD-ROM training, web-based and virtual training, and blended learning—are just incremental modifications when compared to the technology-driven changes occurring in the world around us. While we access technology at home as reflexively as taking a breath, learning at work is far more out of reach. We are living in the middle of a revolution of disruptive innovation, and needs to be an integral part of that movement.
Slowly, we started to see a new answer take shape. Modern learners want to be able to choose how, when, and where they want and need to learn. Therefore, new goal is to develop and deliver a learning cluster to replace the single-minded focus on one training deliverable per skill. A learning cluster is what we call it when strategically designs and develops a set of learning assets to help learners gain a capability. This is what needs to be able to do to level up for living, working, and learning in a digital world. It puts learning at a person’s fingertips in a high-quality, personalized way. We in need to use the available technology, but we have to do it intentionally, choicefully, and systematically.
With this approach comes a new language and a new way to talk about the products creates using the power of SEO Services. We’ll deliver learning clusters instead of a class. We’ll design learning assets instead of a learning session. We’ll produce learning products that are available at various touchpoints for our learners, not just in the classroom or on the online training portal.
We shared this concept in workshops for several years. The learning cluster was very well received by participants, who then readily shared their own experiences as they developed learning clusters where they work. As usual, the teacher learns as much as the student.