LearningOn the Move

In January 2012, AllThingsD. com reported that Apple in its first quarter had sold 15.4 million iPads compared to HP’s fourth-quarter sales of 14.7 million PCs. The rise of mobile

In January 2012, AllThingsD. com reported that Apple in its first quarter had sold 15.4 million iPads compared to HP’s fourth-quarter sales of 14.7 million PCs. The rise of mobile devices, such as the iPad, heralds a change in how people access the training they need.

Employers owe it to themselves, their employees and customers to have a  strategy for mobile learning. To launch mobile training, an organization should ask: How will our existing infrastructure complement mobile learning? What is the best type of content to deliver?

Do our learners have access to high-speed networks?

Questions like these deserve answers in the form of a blueprint. Below is a construct to help organizations launch a program for mobile learning.

>> Start with a pilot program.

>> Choose a learning technology platform.

>> Develop mobile-only courses.

>> Simplify the course catalog you run with your pilot.

>> Use multi-format course tagging.

>> And establish a helpdesk program.

A pilot program requires technology, of course. And this checklist will help employers get started.

>> Learning management system

>> Mobile interface through the LMS of choice

>> Ability to notify learners of training via email

>> Mobile authoring tool

>> Content

>> Ability to survey learners to gauge the impact of training

>> Mechanism for reporting on completions

Don’t forget to evaluate the success of your mobile learning strategy. Track how many people are opening your mobile courses. Tabulate the frequency of completions as well as learner comprehension. Make adjustments. With every bit of progress, you’ll move a step closer to the way people on the move want to learn.

—Vinay Nilakantan is director of Product Development and Research for Meridian Knowledge Solutions. For more information about mobile learning strategies, contact him at vnilakantan@meridianksi.com.

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