Medical / Technology / Education feed
E-learning predictions for 2017.
Joining the folly of futurists and pollsters here are my e-learning predictions for 2017. I'm looking forward to engaging with as many of them as I can.
Conversational technology. Why not have immediate access and personal learning support on platforms through messaging / chat technologies? There will be a move towards bringing support from tutors, peers, topic experts, (and AI bots) closer to the learner and engaging them in conversations on their mobile devices. Learners will want it private and immediate. The conversation could be through conversational interfaces based on speech in future years but probably more focus-on-the-facts chat bots in the coming year.
Skills shortage in software development. Whilst new ideas have always been championed by hackers who learn to code in their spare time I see the barrier to innovation being a scarcity of software development skills. Engaging with the complexities of data APIs, computer graphics, machine learning, and bloated legacy systems is a technical barrier to e-learning innovation the cost of which will only rise. E-learning companies are competing with almost every other company for skills - nearly all companies are e-companies now aren't they? Start-ups that breakthrough this technical barrier will probably extend business opportunities rather than disrupt.
Personalisation and adaptation. More e-learning projects will use approaches to personalise learning or adapt to a learner's capabilities. Learners want recommendations for what they should do next based on what their peers have done before or what their personal performance suggests. This will increasingly be through machine learning and AI rather than simpler heuristics.
AR and VR will grow. We are all fans of Touch Surgery, 3D4medical, and Curiscope's Viruali-Tee. These are going to continue to grow as tools used to learn about medicine and the human body. They will no doubt be joined by others.
Video will shrink (even more). Video is great but learners are going to vote with their feet for shorter snappier videos. Disposable short videos capturing some transient learning moment will become more common. Immediate release will be more desirable than studio-polished production.
Informal learning will grow. Learners will take more opportunities to explore informal learning such as MOOCs and self-directed study through other open resources. They will care less for timescales and accreditation taking the relevance of the learning to their own practice as more important. Teachers will adapt by asking learners to use a range of resources to complete their learning.
Formal learning will become more work-based. More enterprises will try and formalise learning around their organisation's outcomes. In-house delivery or adaptation of materials will be an opportunity for those who can provide it.
BYOD platforms. Learners will expect to be able to view their material on any device. They always have but until now have tolerated the fact that they couldn't - 2017 might change that.
xAPI / SCORM. Uptake of xAPI will increase but new tools for transferring learning materials between different platforms will appear. Examples of Training and Learning Architectures (TLA) will become more visible. The LMS is going to be behind us (soon) when more and more learning is cross-platform.
AI - not there quite yet ... but it will be sometime. Algorithms are going to be the big Intellectual Property in coming years. Non-sentient intelligence will not only be accepted but expected as part of user interfaces. The next "Google" will be an AI company. Those who sit on a wealth of raw training material for AI and don't do anything with it are going to struggle.
Blockchain technologies. There will be more talk of blockchain technology in learning but few examples. Somebody may come up with a public ledger badge system for learning - if they haven't already (opens up console to start coding).