E-learning Wiki

A

Animated infographic

An animated infographic is a moving animated image in video format used for providing knowledge. Unlike a static infographic, which can be printed out, the animated infographic also uses the advantages of film. Besides the moving image, in most cases sound is used, for example, music or an off-screen narrator. An animated infographic provides a visualization of facts, figures, and data in ways that are especially vivid and captivating. Typical areas of application for animated infographics involve the explanation of complex facts, for example a particular method or theory. For example, it is possible to use an animated infographic to demonstrate very powerfully which levels are built on which and how they are interrelated or mutually dependent. An example from the real world is the presentation of the Eisenhower-Matrix. What this infographic does to portray how the matrix is used in prioritizing and planning tasks is superior to any other conceivable format. How do you create an animated infographic? It starts with the researching and listing of the facts and information you want to present with the infographic. Then a specialist, usually a media graphic artist or designer, undertakes the transformation into graphic form. After that, a soundtrack is created, and lastly, the infographic is produced in its final format and published or delivered to the client. An animated infographic addresses the sensory memory and is an attractive way of transferring knowledge. That means the infographic medium is particularly effective in comparison to mere texts and can therefore be used to great effect in company in-house training. Reduction of complexity is taking on growing importance in our information society, which is marked by the problem of never-ending information overload. And this reduction of complexity is precisely what animated infographics do.

Animated explainer graphic

First, it’s essential that we explain: what is an explainer graphic? An explainer graphic is a visual presentation of a topic – e.g. a model, device, or how it works. Explainer graphics can make complex facts easy to understand with the use of images and text. Last but not least, animated explainer graphics also use moving images and sound, unlike the static explainer graphics. The advantage of this is that steps or elements that follow a chronological sequence, or elements that build on each other, can be presented in ways that are especially easy to understand. An animated explainer graphic can make use of every conceivable format: static or “moving” text and images, music, an off-screen narrator, combination with real film or exclusively cartoon visuals, 3D elements, and much more. What will be used depends on the goal to be achieved – and obviously on the budget. However, with an animated explainer graphic, it is important not to lose one’s way with the expensive gimmicks. It is always the didactics that should decide. What is the core content that has to be explained? Who are the target group? How long could or should the animated explainer graphic be? Learning videos naturally tend towards using animated explainer graphics as integral components – and at Pink University we do the same. On this page, you will find three examples of animated explainer graphics.

B

Blended learning

In the e-learning scene, you come across the keyword blended learning more and more frequently – but what exactly is it about? Blended learning can also be spoken of as “learning mix” or even “hybrid learning,” both more accurately expressing the meaning. What it refers to is a form of learning that usually mixes traditional face-to-face events with e-learning, thus combining the strengths of the two learning methods. In practice, blended learning can take a wide variety of forms. A few examples: – The training participants first go through the video training so that everyone is brought up to the same level of knowledge (homogenizing of heterogeneous groups). After that, all participants gather together to apply this knowledge in group work involving case studies or role plays. Further educational films can then be used to reinforce the learning. – The trainer uses various media during the seminar as part of his blended learning concept. For example, he may use animated graphics or game scenes that he presents with a video projector before discussing them with the participants. – The participants first complete a web-based video training (WBVT) course and can then ask the trainer and other learners further questions about the topic. This is an example of how blended learning can manage in certain cases without meeting face-to-face. For this reason, blended learning can appear in many different forms and the design options are therefore very diverse. For a blended learning scenario to be successful, it is important to use media and methods that are ideally suited to the task. In addition, blended learning leads to change in the trainer’s role. Instead of acting solely as a teacher of knowledge, he becomes a knowledge manager, motivator, and mentor of learning processes.

Moving image

“When the pictures learned to walk…” – for over one hundred years now, it has not been possible to imagine our lives without moving images. The moving image began with the flipbook and this led to what we know today as films. From a strictly technical point of view, a moving image represents a series of different images shown one after another during a brief period of time, thus creating an illusion of movement for the person watching. For us humans, it is enough to have about 16 images per second to see a flowing moving image. Our brain perceives what are actually different individual images as a coherent whole. This is what creates the magic of the moving image that no-one is able to pull away from. We can use this effect for many different purposes. Moving images are not only used in cinemas, on television, and in advertisements – they are also increasingly used in further education. Video training is used to convey content with the aid of moving images and sound, and it does so in ways that are emotional and therefore also motivating. This will become clear when you ask the question about whether photographs or moving images are better suited for transferring knowledge. It all makes sense very quickly: Moving images do much more to get the viewer moving, in a literal sense! This is why educational films are ideal for in-company training, because thanks to the moving image and soundtrack, the training is captured by the sensory memory of the learner. With recording performed in a professional film studio, the expert presents his topic in images and sound, but moving images also lend themselves to use in animated graphics, game scenes, explainer graphics, screen capturing, and much more. In short: Like no other teaching medium, moving images have the ability to set knowledge in motion.

Education

Education is a valuable asset – no-one contests this. But what exactly does “education” mean, actually? The German word, “Bildung,” stems from “bildunga” in Old High German, and means “creation, likeness, form.” This refers to the shaping or forming of the mental faculties of the human person. Therefore, education, or “Bildung” in German, represents the lifelong process of human development in which the person acquires and reinforces not only intellectual capability, but also cultural and practical life skills. In connection with education, people also frequently speak of the educational ideal, along the lines of, for example, what was formulated and championed by Wilhelm von Humboldt. For him, education was the basis for creating the autonomous individuals who attain self-determination and maturity through the exercise of their reason. For Humboldt, education was an indispensable basis for becoming a “citizen of the world,” one who could address the great questions facing humanity. Education should therefore develop the human personality, impart, and preserve cultural knowledge, and enable people to live a fulfilled life. Last but not least, education also has the remit of producing well-trained people for specialized occupations on the labor market. This means that education is an important task for society as a whole, a task that is usually performed by educational and training programs and institutions operating under government-mandated standards. In recent decades and especially during the digital revolution, the understanding of education has steadily expanded. Regarding this, an important term is lifelong learning. Education no longer takes place only in a phase from which one graduates. It is neither completed with a vocational education nor university study, but relates to the entire span of at least a person’s working life. Although education today is usually equated with general education, continuing vocational training and professional development describe the targeted acquisition of new skills and abilities. Therefore, continuing vocational training and professional development are part of the extensive complex of “education.” It is in this context that Pink University sees itself as an educational provider specializing in continuing vocational training and professional development with the aid of video training modules designed as self-learning units, and in the form of bespoke productions for corporate clients.

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Corporate MOOC

“MOOC” stands for Massive Open Online Course. “Massive” stands for the theoretically unlimited numbers of participants at MOOCs. “Open” signifies that anyone may participate in an MOOC if they want. Of course, this original meaning no longer applies to Corporate MOOCs, that is, the MOOCs organized by companies for employee training: only (certain) employees of the company are allowed to participate. Given that MOOC has become an established term in common linguistic use and on the e-learning scene, Corporate MOOC is also a term that has emerged, despite being not entirely correct. In practice, a major part of a corporate MOOC consists of presentations of readings by experts on their respective topics. These presentations are recorded on video and then made available to employees either online and/or over the company’s intranet. When corporate MOOCs are produced professionally, these lectures are not made available in verbatim form, but are initially edited and shortened. The reason for this is that experience has demonstrated that learners have a considerably shorter attention span for what appears on a screen rather than at a live event. In addition, a corporate MOOC includes other learning materials and tools, such as texts for preparation and follow-up, exercise for deepening knowledge, and communities or chats where the MOOC participants are able to share with each other or with experts about the learning content. What key advantages do corporate MOOCs offer? Corporate MOOCs enable a company’s employees to profit from video learning while engaging in direct exchange of knowledge with instructors and colleagues. Pink University also offers corporate MOOCs: The core of these events consists either of existing video training or educational films created specifically for the customer, and this is supplemented by forums, chats, virtual classrooms, and much more. Pink University’s Corporate Learning Solutions business unit develops individualized learning environments and with that, corporate MOOCs tailored precisely to the client’s needs.

Customized production of educational videos

A customized educational video is one that is tailored to a client’s needs. For this, the content to be taught and the available budget for the production must both be given equal consideration. If a customized video production is to be made professionally, an experienced team of specialists is indispensable. It starts with a workshop: a didactically trained editorial team must work in close consultation with the client to find out exactly which knowledge is to be taught using the customized educational video and then advise the client on which formats are particularly well suited for doing this. Besides the expert or moderator recorded in the film studio, movie scenes of actors for realistic portrayal of certain scenes are just as worthy of consideration as animated graphics, explainer graphics, or screen capturing for a customized educational video production. When all these points have been clarified, the editorial team develops the concept. The editorial team then prepares a detailed script that specifies the full content and state directions for producing the customized educational video. Depending on the need, realization takes place in a film studio or at the client’s location. Alternatively, in the case of animations, it is done completely on computer. After that, the film editing, image and sound correction, addition of other media layers in the form of overlays, infographics, or summaries, and if desired, the configuration of a customized educational video in the client’s corporate design all takes place during the post-production phase. This is followed by the rendering of the customized educational film before it is put into the ideal format and delivered to the client. The next step is to integrate the customized production into the LMS, if the client has one. This is typically done in compliance with SCORM. By the way, you can click on the following link to get a good impression of how customized educational videos are created at Pink University – in text and pictures: http://www.pinkuniversity.de/schulungsvideos/produktion/

Connectivistic MOOC (cMOOC)

“MOOC” and “cMOOC” are terms that people often hear – but what exactly is encapsulated by them? To start with, MOOC stands for“massive open online course.” “Massive” means that the online course can have a very high number of participants – theoretically without limit. “Open” means that an MOOC is theoretically open to all participants. Lastly, the “c” in cMOOC stands for “connectivistic”. A connectivistic MOOC, or cMOOC for short, is a variant of an MOOC in which the community of learners and the connections with each other and also with the instructors play a very great role. A connectivistic MOOC is based on connectivism, a very new learning theory developed by the Canadian scientist George Siemens. Connectivism sees people not as students working in isolation, but instead as networked learners. A central metaphor for learning is networking through “nodes” – a node can be a learner just as much as knowledge sources such as books, videos, or internet pages. Learning is understood as the process of forging new connections to other nodes and in this way building a learning network. It is precisely this thinking that shapes the basis for a cMOOC: An overarching topic is selected and a schedule created for when certain events such as a virtual classroom will be held, and when the cMOOC will begin and end. The cMOOC participants can now decide for themselves whether they want to suggest learning resources for the topic. These resources can be, for example, links to blog articles, charts, or videos appropriate to the topic. The learning community then works continually in forums, chats, wikis, etc., to comment on, discuss, and expand on these knowledge resources. At cMOOCs, the learning objectives are often defined less clearly than in the case of the xMOOC variant of MOOCs that is frequently encountered at universities. A cMOOC is largely driven by the activities and contributions of its participants – the cMOOC organizers provide the platform and an overarching structure and otherwise prefer to keep a low profile. For this reason, cMOOCs in practice are often operated and used by people seeking to exchange ideas on a particular topic and to share and deepen their existing knowledge.

D

Digital learning

Digital learning is on everyone’s lips – doesn’t that make it a typical buzzword? No, digital learning is about much more: it represents a far-reaching revolution in learning and further education. When it comes to digital learning, many are even speaking of a learning revolution. Digital learning stands for learning with support from digital media. This digital media encompasses all electronic media that run on digital codes. Digital learning extends across a wide range of formats, such as e-books, forums, learning games, online video training, Interactive whiteboards, web-based training, webinars, etc. In German, they are often collectively referred to as “new media.” Therefore, digital learning can also be referred to somewhat inelegantly as “learning with new media.” This abundance of new options that digital learning offers has brought about far-reaching changes in both learning and teaching. Whether in schools, training, universities, or professional development, no sector today would willingly forego digital learning. The advantages that digital learning provides are simply too great. To cite just a few examples: digital learning enables knowledge to be acquired regardless of time and location, while also supporting asynchronous learning, “just in time” retrieval of knowledge, and repetition of content on demand. Beyond that, digital learning also offers attractive cost advantages. For example, if in-company training operates on a fixed budget, it is possible for significantly more employees to have video training on a particular topic than would be possible in a face-to-face seminar. Other advantages of digital learning: content can be assigned to the in-house LMS and it is possible to obtain a transparent picture of individual learning progress with the use of interactive learning tests. It’s no wonder then that digital learning is steadily expanding its footprint in corporate training.

E

E-learning

E-learning is a term everyone speaks of, but what exactly does it stand for? E-learning is short for “electronic learning,” or perhaps better put, “electronically-aided learning.” Other synonyms are, for example, online learning, multimedia learning, or computer-aided learning. E-learning thus represents all forms of learning and teaching that make use of electronic media. There are many ways of accomplishing this, and therefore no universal definition exists for e-learning. The methods, tools, and media that can be employed are too wide-ranging and diversified for this to be possible. To cite an illustrative example, if the learning takes place with the aid of software, the internet, email, chats, or forums, then one can already be speaking of e-learning in a broader sense. The special forms of e-learning are, for example, video training, video conferences and webinars, web-based training, digital learning games, virtual classrooms, or e-lectures (talks or lectures held online). Learning that takes place in learning communities, that is, virtual learning groups, also counts as e-learning. And what are the most important advantages of e-learning? E-learning makes learning more varied, interactive, and vivid. Through e-learning, it is possible to learn at one’s own pace, in keeping with one’s own needs, on a just-in-time basis depending on time and place. These and many other advantages account for growing popularity of e-learning, whether it is in-company training or in schools, vocational training, and universities.

In-company e-learning

In-company e-learning is computer-aided further education. “E-learning” means that it uses electronic media, and therefore “electronically supported learning” or “multimedia learning” are synonyms for e-learning. In-company e-learning is used for in-company and professional training. This is to ensure that employees are kept up to date on matters of importance. In practice, in-company e-learning can be as simple as learning supported by suitable software, the internet, or learning wikis and forums. Beyond these, many special forms of e-learning are in use, such as learning with the aid of video training, webinars, web-based training (WBT), or serious games. What are the most important arguments for using in-company e-learning? E-learning makes it possible for employees to access a company’s knowledge on demand, that is to say, according to individual needs. This content is available regardless of time or place, and every employee can take time to learn at their own pace. In other words, they can repeat the content or explore it in greater depth as many times as they want. Therefore, in-company e-learning also offers great flexibility and requires less time and effort in organizing than, for example, classroom instruction or seminars. And last but not least, in-company e-learning has definite cost advantages compared to the classroom. Taken together, all these advantages have helped in-company e-learning to establish itself with an expanding footprint.

F

Film production

Film production: without this, there would be no Hollywood, no television, and no video training from Pink University. Wherever there is a need for high-quality film content, there is a demand for professional film production. Film production is therefore one of the very core building blocks for the production of our video training courses. In this context, “film production” refers to the entire process for creating a film. This process can be explained from beginning to end of the production timeline for an ideal video training course as follows: Film production: project development Film production begins with project development. At this point, ideas are developed for the video training and the script is written. If it is a customer production, this involves close consultations with the client. In addition, the requisite financing and possibly legal questions – such as the question of what licenses must be purchased – will be clarified. Film production: pre-production The second step of film production is pre-production. Practical steps will be taken in preparation for filming. Then there is the hiring of the filming team. Typically, this team is made up of a director, cameraman, lighting technician, and sound technician. Nevertheless, depending on the scope of the film production, many other specialists can also be involved, for example assistant directors, script supervisors, production designers, make-up artists, additional camera crew, sound assistants, and of course actors where necessary. In addition, filming locations are selected, the film set is created, and the requisite equipment is obtained. Film production: shooting The heart of film production is shooting. This is where the actual filming takes place. It is at this stage where top-notch preparation pays off. If the shooting team and the technicians work together seamlessly during the stage, the footage that the film production needs can be created within the scheduled time. This is important to stay on track with the financial planning for the film production, because delays can quickly lead to massive cost overruns. Film production: post-production Even after the shooting is done, there is still a lot to do for the film production to be complete. Now the work on post-production begins. This includes editing, underlaying images with music and sounds, and digital post-production. When it comes to video training, this last part represents an especially vital phase in film production. In video training, the didactics are in the foreground, and so the overlays, explainer graphics, animations, screen capturing, and so on, are created and integrated into the production at this point. If it is a commissioned production, the client’s proprietary corporate design will be taken into account. Film production: playout and handover At the end of the film production, there is the playout and handover. The completed video training is converted into the required format. Here, special attention must be paid to ensuring that the film files can be played on all mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones. The film footage, representing the result of the film production work, is then handed over for use. The content is either hosted in the cloud or the user company will integrate it into its own learning environment, or the Learning Management System (LMS).

H

Heutagogy

Heutagogy is a science that deals with self-determined learning and is understood as a holistic, lifelong process. Heutagogy thus encompasses everything a person ever learns in life, from starting to walk to earning a doctorate. Heutagogy is related to andragogy, the science of the lifelong learning of adults. However, heutagogy goes far beyond andragogy, as it also deals with learning competencies (“learning to learn”) and includes formal, so to speak, as well as informal learning forms. As a term in itself, but also as a field of research, heutagogy is quite new. The Australian education researchers Stewart Hase and Chris Kenyon are regarded as pioneers of heutagogy. In 2000, they presented the first scientific publication on heutagogy – and it was there that they coined it as a term. Hase and Kenyon wanted to use heutagogy to develop a contemporary response to challenges that in today’s world demand flexibility and lifelong learning. Unlike pedagogy, the focus of heutagogy is on active, self-directed, and self-reflective learning. That is why heutagogy also plays a vital role in professional development: Today, human resources developers are no longer mere “educators,” who make the decisions on where to send colleagues for their training. Rather, heutagogy requires that human resources developers see themselves first of all as knowledge organizers and providers who make knowledge available on demand (which can be done with video learning, for example). In this role, they also create incentives to learn and foster a positive learning culture in the company, one in which self-directed learning and continuous transfer of knowledge are a matter of course.

I

In-company training

In-company training In-company training refers to all employer-organized actions and activities for employees to develop and deepen their capacity and qualifications on a continuing basis. However, in-company training does not include initial training such as an apprenticeship or traineeship, but rather the subsequent pursuit of more advanced qualifications that build on and expand professional knowledge. The German Vocational Training Act stipulates that in-company training “should make it possible to maintain or build on professional knowledge and skills or move into higher occupational positions.” The reason for the great importance attached to in-company training in this day and age is primarily because today’s knowledge-based society has made lifelong learning a necessity. In some fields, regular in-company training is in fact a prerequisite for maintaining a license to practice, such as for a pilot or therapist. Beyond that, employees are becoming increasingly aware that continuous in-company training is a must if they want to be able to hold their ground in the face of the competition and ensure that their people remain employable over the long term. In practice, the greatest proportion of in-company training involves the transfer of knowledge by means of instruction or teaching carried out directly in the workplace. This very common form of in-company training is also referred to as “training on the job” or “training near the job.” The advantage of this type of in-company training is that it involves very little time and effort in organization and the knowledge that trainees gain is put to direct use and can therefore be deepened further. Last but not least, however, in-company training also takes the form of “off the job“ training. This type of in-company training is provided, for example, in formally-organized events such as seminars, workshops, or coaching. These days, however, it increasingly involves e-learning. This newest form of learning applies a diversity of tools, for example, video trainings, web-based training, corporate wikis, and virtual classrooms. However, they also include mixed forms of face-to-face and e-learning, such as blended learning or flipped learning. The reason for the growing popularity of e-learning for in-company training lies most of all in the flexibility that it offers with regard to time and place and in the possibility of accessing knowledge on an on-demand or just-in-time basis.

Internet seminar

An internet seminar offers many advantages compared to the customary face-to-face classes. Participants are not tied to fixed times, but can complete all or part of a learning unit whenever it suits them. In addition, an online seminar is usually affordably priced or in some cases even absolutely free of charge. Internet seminars are offered for a very broad range of topics that covers both basic knowledge as well as in-depth learning on specific subjects. Online learning programs are also excellently suited for learning foreign languages. In keeping with the concept of lifelong learning, young and experienced managers alike use this modern form of knowledge transfer to build their competencies on an ongoing basis. For example, in the field of marketing, many training videos are available that sales mangers can use to learn various sales techniques. In recent years, soft skills have also been gaining importance for a successful career. With help from internet seminars, systematic development of social skills is within the reach of every manager. This is accomplished with seminars on communication techniques, conflict management, group dynamics or similar topics, depending on individual learning needs. Videos like this also feature experienced trainers who teach the basics of psychology, learning that is indispensable for understanding and shaping interpersonal interactions in a professional environment. In these training courses, coaches attach great importance to the practical usefulness of their explanations and tips.

K

Knowledge management

Knowledge management aims to make knowledge accessible in an efficient system within an organization. In knowledge management, knowledge is defined as all information, data, and the full range of experience and skills that are needed for the organization to perform its tasks. For this to be achieved, the scope of knowledge management includes acquisition, development, storage, and use of knowledge. Nevertheless, knowledge management is not to be confused with information management, as knowledge management goes much further. Information is the essential prerequisite for generating knowledge, and information can be handled just like any other goods. Knowledge, on the other hand, is not created merely by gathering information, but by linking information to existing knowledge. In knowledge management, a distinction is made between explicit and tacit knowledge. Explicit knowledge can be formulated; it is reproducible and can be presented in words and numbers, for example. – Tacit knowledge is difficult to formulate and impart, because it has a personal component, which is why in knowledge management, people speak of “hidden knowledge.” An example of this is the wide-ranging expertise of an employee who has served many years. For professional knowledge management, the challenge lies in how to make all this knowledge available in the best possible way. Therefore, knowledge management includes the use of many different tools, such as communication software, corporate wikis, and document storage systems, but also involves the building of an efficient knowledge culture that expects and promotes exchange of knowledge among employees. Last but not least, an important function of knowledge management is to ensure timely, continuous, and efficient acquisition of new knowledge. E-learning, for example in video training, is particularly suitable for this, in addition to traditional forms of learning. In knowledge management, a Learning Management System (LMS) is usually employed to provide learning content and plan learning processes.

L

Creating teaching videos

Creating teaching videos – how does it actually work? First, a definition of “teaching videos”: these are films produced specifically for transferring knowledge. As a tool for teaching and learning, video exploits the advantages of the medium: sound and images are used to connect on the auditory and visual levels, and in so doing communicate with the sensory memory, and this makes knowledge especially easy to absorb and retain. A good teaching video is built on didactic criteria and has a clear structure, is vividly descriptive, and has a motivating effect. Therefore, when creating professional teaching videos, an experienced team of specialists is essential. First, an editor with didactic training creates the concept and the script. The filming team, which consists of the director, a cameraman, sound technician, and lighting professional, carries out the shooting of the teaching video. For this, other filming experts, such as scene designers, assistant directors, makeup artists, and in some cases also actors, are also often needed. In teaching videos, the knowledge is usually presented by an expert, who talks directly to the camera. In post-production, this is supplemented by other, additional layers of media. The digital post-production work, for example, involves not only cutting and underlaying with music and sounds, but also the addition of explainer graphics, animations, overlays, or screen captures. Lastly, the training video is converted into the required format and integrated either into the client’s LMS or into the proprietary playback platform. Pink University has a team like this, one made up of specialists, along with vast experience in the creation of teaching videos with content ranging from leadership and management, professional skills, soft skills, and software to health and fitness, as well as commissioned productions.

M

Employee training

What is the purpose of employee training? In a nutshell: employee training is about targeted, in-company transfer of knowledge. In practice, there are occasions that necessitate employee training. It may be a new product or service offering that must be presented to employees. Perhaps the operation of new machinery has to be explained, or the general skills of the employees themselves need to be brought up to a new level, for example in project handling or time management. What are the different forms of employee training? First, one has to differentiate between internal and external employee training. In the case of internal training, the knowledge transfer takes place within the company, and usually other trained employees convey this knowledge. External training is performed by outside trainers or coaches, and in most cases, away from the company itself. For example, the training can be held in a training center or a conference hotel. Finally, as to how to conduct the employee training, there are various methods and tools to choose from. One of these is the traditional form, in face-to-face interaction. The instructor stands “physically” in front of the employees and uses a flipchart, whiteboard, and video projector as teaching aids. Nevertheless, e-learning tools are becoming increasingly mainstream for employee training, such as in blended learning seminars. In these events, the theoretical knowledge is presented, for example using explainer videos, and this is subsequently discussed and applied in practical exercises when meeting face-to-face. Beyond this, however, there is also employee training that is purely digital. An example of this is a video training session where employees are taught everything they need to know about a new product or similar. The great advantage of this method lies in the ability to access knowledge any time and form anywhere, and each employee can learn at their own pace.

Microlearning

“Bite-size learning” … that is the simplest and most succinct explanation of microlearning. Microlearning is how we describe learning that takes place in small learning units. In microlearning, “micro” may be applied in various ways: Time – each step in microlearning takes at the most a few minutes, sometimes just a few seconds Content – an essential feature of microlearning is clearly outlined topics that are presented in brief Form – the most important feature is round-the-clock availability. In microlearning, the user is able to access content on their own whenever, wherever, and as often as they want Why is microlearning gaining popularity in use today, especially in e-learning? This is because pegagogists and didacticians have recognized and demonstrated that it is especially easy for knowledge to be absorbed and retained when microlearning is used. In microlearning, the bite-size knowledge is “easily digestible” – the brain is able to absorb and internalize especially well when learning is packaged into small units Users also have a low inhibition threshold for these easy-to-grasp microlearning processes, which explains the high levels of acceptance that microlearning has won. For producers themselves, microlearning also has important advantages: small units are created quickly and can be quickly enhanced with added material at a later time. One practical example of microlearning is video training. A well-made online educational film consists of several chapters, small units that can be accessed independently of each other. Microlearning users are able to repeat this content whenever they wish, flexibly at any time and in any place, thanks to mobile devices.

MOOC

MOOC is the abbreviation for Massive Open Online Course . “Massive” in the case of an MOOC means that conceivably there can be a very high or even unlimited number of participants. “Open” means that every participant who has registered for the MOOC is able to join the online course, and to do so at any time and place thanks to the availability of internet access. MOOCs have their origin in the world of US higher education. In the first MOOCs, university events such as lectures or seminars were recorded on video and then made available for online use – and the MOOC was ready. In some cases, an MOOC was nothing more than a live broadcast of lectures. But it soon became evident that with this type of MOOC, people’s attention span when looking at the screen was significantly less than at a live event, and this led to sharply increased dropout rates. Therefore, the MOOC underwent further development and improvement. Lecture content was not provided verbatim, but first didactically processed and then edited and shortened. A good MOOC typically includes supplementary reading material for preparation and follow-up, assignments to be completed, or forums in which learners and instructors can exchange ideas. Today, a distinction is made between xMOOCs and cMOOCs: the “x” in xMOOC stands for “extension.” An xMOOC is designed along the lines of a lecture and usually commands a very high attendance. In xMOOCs, recorded video lectures are frequently supplemented by forums, test questions, or homework assignments. In xMOOCs, work like this is often corrected by other MOOC participants due to time and capacity constraints. The “c” in cMOOC stands for “connectivism” or “connected.” In this connectivistic variant of MOOC, each MOOC participant can decide to what extent they want to be involved in active participation and contribute their own materials on the topic. These materials can be videos, texts, or podcasts that are then incorporated into the MOOCs and discussed and expanded on. A key criticism of MOOCs is that the dropout rates are generally quite high. In other words, only a few participants ever get to take the final exam. If 10% of them do, that is already considered a good rate. This may relate to the fact that some see the MOOC format as being anonymous, as well as possible underestimation of the time commitment that goes with serious participation in MOOCs. However, a further explanation is that the didactic design of MOOCs has its shortcomings. These experiences prompted MOOC pioneer Sebastian Thrun, for example, to make a radical u-turn with his Udacity company. At the end of 2013, he announced that for the future, he would focus on paid professional development. It is exactly this direction that Pink University has always pursued: the creation of didactically prepared and painstakingly filmed video training courses for in-company training – this is the basis on which Corporate MOOCs have taken shape.

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Learning online

Why Learn Online? Because learning online is quick, flexible, and efficient. More than that, it’s also fun! Given that, the main reasons for the widespread popularity of online learning can be captured in a nutshell. How does online learning work in practice? There are many ways in which people can do their learning online. In fact, any form of knowledge acquisition that involves sourcing information on the internet counts as online learning, even looking up articles on Wikipedia or definitions on duden.de, for example. However, in a narrower sense, online learning is usually understood to mean learning in environments that are accessible online or that work with online access. In addition, these are learning environments designed specifically for acquisition of knowledge and that factor in didactic findings. Among others, applications, or apps for short, are very popular, and can of course be used on smartphones. The big advantage of these small online learning programs is that people can access them anywhere. This is ideal for memorizing vocabulary or preparing for an exam for which a special app is provided. On the other hand, more comprehensive offerings are also used for online learning of a more in-depth nature. Web-based trainings (WBTs), which are usually accessed on a computer or tablet, are a popular form of online learning. In particular, WBTs play a vital role in professional development. The advantages of WBTs are that they are user-friendly, allow participants to take online tests, and can also include interactive features. The new generation of WBTs and therefore also of online learning is that of web-based video training courses (WBVTs), in which learning videos play a central role. For learners, these video training courses appeal to multiple senses. The moving images enable content to be conveyed vividly and with emotional impact, which do much to boost motivation for learning and sustainable acquisition of knowledge. That is online learning that works and is fun.

Online course

Online courses: learning online Nowadays, anyone who is pursuing an academic degree can do so without having to enter a university. Following the rapid growth of the internet at the end of the 1990s, e-learning, a form of distance learning that uses electronic media, has established itself as a successful alternative to classroom teaching. Many universities have considerably expanded their online study options, while others specialize entirely in online teaching. Nevertheless, it is not only university degrees that can be obtained through online courses. So-called hobby courses intended for leisure pursuits can also be taken online. Online courses can also be based on different kinds of technology. What they have in common is the individual learning platform, which is used to organize and conduct the instruction. Even in registration and planning phases, the processes operate on the learning platform. Curricula are created, placement tests are administered, and work groups are formed. In addition, the requisite course documents are made available on the learning platform. After an online course is successfully completed, the issuing of certificates and the performance measurements are also conducted on the learning platform. The media applications used in online courses can also vary widely. The offering to users ranges from hypertext courses to video or audio-based learning. Because physical distances mean that direct interaction between instructor and learner is not possible, video conferencing is becoming increasingly popular. The use of so-called teleteaching enables a communication situation to be created between participants in a way that resembles classroom teaching.

Online training

For many business managers, online training provides a practical option for pursuing further education. Whenever they find time and opportunity to do so, they use internet learning to acquire new knowledge in innovative ways. Last but not least, a strong selling point of this modern learning method is the low costs involved. Coaching programs of this kind are available for a broad diversity of learning content. Special internet training is offered across the full range of business management subjects, such as accounting, controlling, marketing, or financing. Particularly helpful are training sessions that help sales managers master the basics of systematic selling. Programs are especially recommended where they have a strong practical application, enabling the acquired learning to be applied in day-to-day work. Many career beginners and even experienced managers alike swear by online training programs for learning and further development of invaluable soft skills. Today, alongside technical and methodological competence, impeccable manners and a confident demeanor are indispensable prerequisites for professional success. If you want to be sure that deficits in these areas will not become stumbling blocks in your career, then make use of internet training for systematic improvement of your social skills. In training videos, reputable trainers and coaches provide clear instruction on what matters in interpersonal dealings in professional life, and where the dangerous pitfalls lie.

Online learning

Online learning – Distance learning with the aid of electronic media has experienced rapid growth in the wake of the expansion of the internet at the end of the 1990s. Since that time, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has launched numerous initiatives, such as New Media in Education or the Notebook University for example. These days, many universities maintain a wide range of online courses. Some, like Germany’s state distance-learning university in Hagen, have switched over to specializing exclusively in distance learning. Wherever electronic or digital media are used in training and learning processes, this is referred to as e-learning. If the training is primarily delivered over the internet, this process is described as virtual training. Virtual training is distinct from face-to-face training, because the training and learning processes are carried out over distance. Virtual training offers a wider range of didactic aids, for example, webinars, hypertext courses, and video or audio-based course offerings (podcasts). Unlike face-to-face learning, online learning offers few opportunities for direct interaction between the instructor and learners. For this reason, electronic media is coming into increasing use for communication. The media used can be chatrooms, e-mails, or video training. What is essential is the particular learning platform on which a special online course is made available. This is where the course planning, enrollments, and provision of course documents takes place. In addition, the issuing of certificates and measurement of performance is also carried out on the learning platform.

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Peer-to-peer video learning

Peer-to-peer video learning means learning through exchange of experiences aided by the video medium. “Peer-to-peer” literally means“from human to human” or “among the like-minded.” In further education, peer-to-peer-learning means exchange of knowledge from colleague to colleague. Peer-to-peer video learning also means that employees of a company use videos to share their knowledge and experience with colleagues. Videos are highly suited as a learning medium because they use moving images and sound to convey a vast quantity of information in a short time – whenever and as often as necessary Peer-to-peer video learning is particularly useful, for example, for documenting technical operations performed by hand, such as how to operate, clean, or maintain a specific machine. To create a short peer-to-peer video like this, the video and audio quality are usually not core issues of concern. Videos like these can be recorded with an ordinary digital camera or even a smartphone. It is important that this short video is made available in a central location where it is also well tagged with keywords. That way, the peer-to-peer video can easily be found by colleagues who are looking for a solution to a particular problem. However, a note of caution: uncontrolled uploading of peer-to-peer is not recommended! For legal and liability reasons, a responsible employee should check the video for the quality and accuracy of its content before “releasing” a short “how-to film” of this kind for all other employees to watch. A peer-to-peer video with the wrong tips or information could have fatal consequences for the company and occupational safety.

Human resources development 2.0

Human resources development 2.0 – this buzzword stands for innovative forms of employee development involving the use of interactive web 2.0 elements. This means primarily the use of social media and user-generated content such as forums, blogs, wikis, or even corporate YouTube productions with video and audio podcasts. In addition, e-learning in forms such as video training, virtual classrooms, and corporate MOOCs that similarly provide interactive features like comments, ratings, and recommendations, are effective tools for human resources development 2.0. Why do we have human resources development 2.0? There are several reasons for this. Social media is becoming ever more important, and this is leading to entirely new opportunities for sharing knowledge that cuts across departmental, geographical, and hierarchical boundaries. Knowledge is an important factor in being competitive and therefore the exchange and shared use of existing knowledge is a vital organizational duty that comes under human resources development. Therefore, one of the core goals of human resources development 2.0 is to create opportunities and actively promote informal learning within the company. Human resources development 2.0 means that management checks which “2.0” elements can be usefully employed for a particular objective. For example: a video podcast with content “produced” by employees can be used for peer-to-peer video learning purposes in sharing knowledge about operation and maintenance of machinery. Alternatively, a knowledge blog or wiki on a specific topic can serve to capture and disseminate know-how in written articles. Other employees can use the comments feature to ask questions and report their own experiences. Another advantage is that this knowledge, being available online, can be accessed on-demand. Instead of using one-to-many transfer of knowledge as in the past – in other words, one instructor passing on his knowledge to many employees, human resources development 2.0 employs the many-to-many principle. This means that when it comes to passing on and acquiring knowledge, it is increasingly employees themselves who are playing this role. Both employees and the company itself benefit from these new forms of human resources development.

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Educational videos

Educational videos are all films produced and used for educational purposes. These educational videos can be of various lengths and formats: There are some training videos that run for several hours, working through a particular topic in great detail. Likewise one can also find very short educational videos that last only a few seconds and, for example, explain a particular method very briefly and succinctly. An educational video that is didactically well-designed typically consists of several chapters that the user can select directly and pause and repeat at any time. The individual chapters of an educational video should not exceed 10-15 minutes running time each. Today, of course, educational videos are no longer offered as “videos” in the traditional meaning, that is on videocassettes. Some educational videos are available on DVDs, but more importantly, online-based forms are becoming increasingly popular. The advantage: if educational videos are accessible online, they can also be played on various devices, such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones, at any time and regardless of location. The greatest advantage of educational videos is that the learning content can be conveyed more vividly and retained longer in memory with the aid of filmed or animated visualizations in comparison to, for example, printed learning media such as course books or textbooks. In addition, educational videos are very well suited for self-directed “on-demand” learning, that is, for short-term, pin-pointed transfer of knowledge. That is why educational videos are very popular when used in in-company training.

Screencast

No, a screencast has nothing to do with a casting show for television. Instead, the term “screencast” is made up of “screen” and “to cast“, meaning, among others, to create a form or to pour something into a mold. Therefore, you could say that a screencast is a film that is formed directly on screen, and the content of a screencast has been, let’s say, “poured” directly into the monitor. In short: a screencast is a “movie on a screen.” In other words, a screencast should be understood as a digital film that directly portrays the processes involved in using the computer screen. A screencast can be imagined as a very rapid sequence of screenshots where you can see the mouse movements and changes on the monitor. Screencasts are usually accompanied by audio comments and fade-ins. A screencast is very useful in a video training session, when you want to show how a particular item of software works. Let’s take the example of our video training for Microsoft Excel, the popular spreadsheet program: Here, in the screencast, the user sees a screen with the program that has been started, looking similar to his own. The user can take what is demonstrated in the screencast to perform the same actions with his own Excel program. The professional narrator explains the individual steps off-screen, and the requisite mouse clicks will also be demonstrated. In addition, Excel files can be downloaded in our sample screencast so that what has been learned can be applied immediately in practice. Therefore, in the learning of software programs, the following applies: Nothing is quite so visually captivating as a well-made screencast!

Educational films

Educational films is a term that may prompt some to think spontaneously of the films shown in schools in past times, perhaps of a volcanic eruption in Hawaii or penguins in the mating season. Granted, these films also belong to the category of educational films, but the term has a much broader application. Educational films are understood to mean all films produced in order to impart knowledge. However, it was not in schools, universities, or further education that educational films first came into use. Instead, it was much earlier. Even a kid’s program like Sesame Street uses educational films, such as in learning how to count or the different colors and shapes. There are two things to be noticed from this example. Good educational films may and even should be enjoyable – and good educational films are precisely tailored to their target group, whether that happens to be preschool children or adults. For adults especially, educational films play an especially important role as a continuing education media. Unlike other learning media, such as books or presentations, educational films make especially complex interdependencies easy to grasp. Educational films are excellently suited, for example, for teaching or learning how to maintain and operate a machine, how to apply a scientific method, or how to conduct oneself in certain difficult situations. And they are ideal for low-cost, effective reproduction of training in professional development that is provided on a recurring basis. In-company educational films are used in support of – on-boarding processes – change processes and for – soft skills training – leadership training – management training – software training – health & fitness training In a nutshell, training films convey the relevant information in ways that are easy to understand. A good educational film gets to the heart of a matter, but without being long-winded. And: a good educational film is appealing, motivating, and enjoyable. Are you interested in some specific examples? Then take a look at the educational films produced by Pink University!

Structured and targeted video learning

Video learning is learning with the aid of the video medium. In video learning, moving images with sound are used as learning material to pass on knowledge. The great advantage of structured and targeted video learning is that learning videos that are produced professionally and apply didactic principles are especially effective in vividly imparting knowledge. The reason for this is that video learning uses images and sound to connect with the learner in simultaneous processes at the visual and auditory levels and thus with the sensory memory. That means the job of absorbing and anchoring the knowledge can be made very easy. in other words, structured and targeted video learning is what enables sustainable building and acquisition of knowledge. Reinforcing this effect is the fact that video learning content can be accessed again and again, as many times as they wish. This means that video learning users are able to absorb and deepen their knowledge at their own learning pace and, thanks to mobile devices, to do this wherever and whenever they choose. In addition, video learning is able to impart an emotional dimension to the knowledge, for example, from the manner of presentation by a lecturer, and scientists have proven that this is one of the most important prerequisites for learning. Thanks to all these advantages, video learning is being used for in-company training with increasing frequency. A further consideration is that once the video-based teaching materials have been created, it is possible to guarantee uniformly high standards regardless of individual trainer performance. In a blended learning scenario, it is therefore advisable to separate knowledge building on one hand into structured video learning and on the other into use of face-to-face attendance for formats suited for this mode, such as role plays, exercises, and coaching. Structured, targeted video learning is particularly well suited for self-directed and self-organized learning.

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Sales training

Use sales training to increase revenues Ever since the economy got off the ground, sales has been one of the most elementary areas of business for every profitable company. Products and services must be offered and brought to market. The work of the sales department in acquisition of new customers, pricing of new products, and retaining long-term customers means that it carries a large part of the responsibility for the company’s success. In recent years, sophisticated sales training has become well-established in the effort to avoid mistakes in this area or build on existing sales techniques. In the course of a sales training, participants learn how to be customer-friendly in how they act while maximizing profit. Sales training teaches how to respond to customer needs and find the right products for them from the available alternatives. Furthermore, to achieve sustainable success in sales, attention must be paid to ensuring adequate customer care. Authenticity and product knowledge are characteristics of a good salesperson, as are good techniques for making arguments. A sales training course will explain the key points for conducting sales calls with successful results. This includes creating a conducive atmosphere, asking the right questions, and last but not least, the correct ways of promoting one’s own products. Given that successful sales work is based very much on experience, sales training is especially recommended for newcomers to the job.

Video-based transfer of knowledge

Learning with videos … this captures in a nutshell what video-based transfer of knowledge is about. Explained in greater detail: Video-based knowledge transfer refers to preparation and delivery of learning content where the video medium is used. Why do we use videos for transfer of knowledge? For very simple reasons: For learners, video-based knowledge transfer enables the dual coding of the content into moving images and sound, so that the learning is received via the auditory and visual channels of perception. In this way, video-based knowledge transfer demonstrably improves retention, as the scientist Allan Paivio presented in his work, “Mental representations, a dual coding approach.” Another important argument for video-based knowledge transfer: when used as learning media, videos also provide the means for emotional anchoring of the learning material. Video-based knowledge transfer thus satisfies one of the important prerequisites for learning in general. This is obvious when you ask yourself, which is the more appealing and motivating medium for learning: A printed textbook or an instructor who delivers the knowledge on screen in a competent and personalized way? A further advantage of video-based knowledge transfer is the ability for content to be received without being limited by space and time. In other words, online-based learning videos can be accessed by any device anywhere with internet access, whether with a computer at work, or by using a laptop on a commuter train, or on a smartphone or tablet while in the park. Taken together, all these advantages have ensured that video-based knowledge transfer is becoming increasingly mainstreamed into professional and in-company training. Pink University is the leading provider of business video training in the German-speaking world. On one hand, its portfolio includes a well-stocked knowledge library on all company-relevant topics in the areas of leadership & management, soft skills, professional expertise, software, and health & fitness, and on the other hand, it offers customized video training courses and corporate MOOCs for business customers.

Video lectures

Video lectures, literally speaking, are videos recorded from lectures. In other words, video lectures are created when talks or lectures are filmed while presented live and the video is then made available so that everyone who did not listen to the instructors or experts in the live lecture will be able to benefit from that knowledge. Many variations of video lectures exist. Very commonly, lectures at universities or presentations by speakers discussing certain topics are filmed and then posted on the web. The video lectures of the TED conference, for example, have gained widespread popularity. This event is held annually and the best presentations are available as video lectures on the internet. Nevertheless, video lectures are often created specifically for MOOCs or flipped classrooms, given that video lectures are a core element of these forms of learning. More and more, video lectures are being produced by professionals in television studios and supplemented with the use of other formats, such as animations, game scenes, or explainer graphics. This is how video lectures are transformed into video training with high-quality didactics. A core advantage of video lectures is that on one hand, they capture the knowledge presented in the lectures, and on the other, this knowledge is accessible at any time and from anywhere. This is especially true when video lectures are placed online, a step that makes mobile learning possible. In addition, video lectures are able to convey knowledge and ideas in ways that are much more emotional, exciting, and “personal” compared to other media, such as textbooks, blog articles, or traditional web-based training.

Video seminars

Video seminars – as the name suggests – are seminars in video form that are used for further education. What sounds simple, however, can only be accomplished with a great deal of effort and considerable expertise. To create high-quality video seminars, a didactically-trained editorial team must collaborate with an experienced filming team that consists of a cameraman, sound technician, lighting technician, and editor. In this way, the knowledge delivered in the video seminar will be neatly prepared and transformed into moving images with sound. In practice, what usually happens is that first the editorial team plans the structure and content in detail and selects the formats to be used in the video seminar. Besides the instructor, who presents his topic in front of the camera, these formats can consist of overlays, animated graphics, screencasts, or game scenes, not to mention others. Using these, the video seminar will be made into a successful teaching tool. These additional elements are created by the filming team or specialized media graphic designers. According to the tried and tested philosophy of microlearning, it is important that the knowledge presented in video seminars is divided into units of no more than 10-12 minutes each, given that the learner’s attention span is much shorter when in front of a screen than, for example, at a live lecture. If due attention is paid to all these technical and content-related prerequisites, video seminars are able to display all their advantages as a medium for transfer of knowledge. The content is conveyed simultaneously via images and sound, and therefore addresses the learning styles at the visual and auditory levels. This makes it particularly easy for learners in video seminars to absorb the knowledge. Another reason for why the learning in video seminars can be anchored well is that the learners have the option of skipping back and forth at any time and for watching individual sections multiple times. In other words, microactivity. It is this microactivity that high-quality video seminars incorporating didactic principles offer users.

Video course

Video course? Is this something like a course where you learn to create videos? That can be the case – but what is meant by a video course is much more. “Video course” generally refers to a teaching and learning medium: A video course is a film created for transfer of knowledge. Everything there is to know and learn about a particular topic can be taught through the medium of the video course. But what exactly does such a video course look like? To serve as a learning medium, a professionally created video course is built around didactic principles. A good video course has a clear structure. Its contents are descriptive and motivate the learner – and in the best case a video course is also entertaining. In a video course, an instructor usually plays the main role and guides the learners through the material. In a video course like this, the instructor is visible on screen, like is also the case in most of the video courses offered by Pink University. In other video courses, the instructor or a professional narrator may also be audible off-screen while animated graphics are being shown in the video image, for example. What advantages does the video course medium have over other learning media, such as books? A video course addresses the sensory memory. Using images and sound, a connection is established at the visual and auditory levels, which makes the knowledge particularly easy to absorb. The ability to skip back and forth at any time and to view individual sections more than once will help anchor the learning. In the past, a video course was delivered on a physical data carrier, such as a video cassette or a DVD. However, today, thanks to the greater internet bandwidths, cloud-based video courses have entered the mainstream. As a result, a video course can now be accessed from any internet-capable device. This adds even greater flexibility to learning in this mode, because people can access video courses from wherever they are at any time. Video courses are therefore one of the most important methods of mobile learning.

Video education

Video education, as the name suggests, is education that uses video. In other words, the educational video presents the material to be learned and the full scope of knowledge to be taught is contained in this video training. There are two different ways of providing video education: Firstly, video education can take place live, for example, by means of a webinar or on Skype, the widely used internet telephony program. For this variant, the instructor planning a remote seminar of this kind must communicate with the participants to notify them of a specific time and date and take a place in front of the screen at that exact time. The advantage of this type of video teaching is that the learners can put questions directly to the instructor “live.” However, this video education by webinar has many disadvantages. The image and sound quality is usually poor, the instructor is unable to draw on a wide range of options for visualizing the knowledge, and most importantly, the video education takes place only at a given time. For this reason, video education that uses professional ready-made videos is gaining popularity. Video education like this can be accessed at any time from any device with internet capability. That’s why this type of video education is referred to as learning on demand. The content of video education like this usually has very good image and sound quality and in most cases has a complete second media layer. This layer can typically incorporate animated graphics, game scenes, on location shooting, and much more. Blended learning arrangements are special forms of this type of video education. In these, video education is combined with classroom work. The advantage: even before the classroom training, participants can be brought up to a standard level – in this case, it is referred to as homogenization of heterogeneous target groups. The face-to-face seminar that follows can then be used for role plays and exercises, thanks to the preparatory work with video teaching.

Video teaching

Video teaching is the transfer of knowledge using the video medium. Video teaching therefore means that moving images and sound are employed as the medium of instruction. The major advantage for learners is that video teaching appeals to various senses. This way, the knowledge is especially easy to absorb and internalized with long-lasting effect. In practice, video teaching can take various forms. The instructor can present his knowledge to the learners on live video, for example Skype, or use a virtual classroom. The advantage of this direct mode of video teaching is that the instructor is able to give learners immediate feedback and respond to their questions verbally. The disadvantage, however, is that knowledge transfer by means of live video teaching is only provided at specific times, and that the knowledge is therefore not available at any given time. Despite this, video teaching can also mean that the transfer of knowledge also takes place with preproduced videos, as in the case of video training courses provided by the Pink University. In educational films created in a professional film studio, the instructor presents his knowledge to the learners in front of a camera. Other media layers such as animated explainer graphics, game scenes, or screencasts are added in the post-production phase. The advantage of video teaching in this form is that the knowledge can be accessed whenever needed, regardless of time or place. Being cloud-based, the content is accessible from any internet-capable device. In this way, video teaching in this form opens the doors of possibility for mobile learning on demand.

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Web-based video training (WBVT)

WBVT? Does this have anything to do with web based training, or WBT for short? That’s right, it does! What the abbreviation WBVT stands for is web-based video training. And web-based video training is web-based training in a more advanced form. WBT stands for internet-based training provided on screen, with flexibility for the user regarding time and location. In this, the learning content is incorporated in the form of text and images. WBTs are often derided by users as machines mindlessly churning out boring text. This characterization embodies the criticism that interactivity is often limited to merely clicking through the content. An added shortcoming is the mostly excessive use of text to present the content, with learners hardly in a position to engage at the emotional level. Nevertheless, WBTs also offer some advantages. The format is now widely known and is easy to use, it helps to structure the material, and the technical work of integrating it into the company’s own IT system is relatively easy to manage. The web-based video training courses (WBVTs) by Pink University seek to retain these advantages while avoiding the disadvantages. The core of a WBVT is therefore the educational video that it presents, which is specially designed as a goal-oriented, structured medium for self-learning. The web-based video training courses by Pink University are also enhanced by other interactive elements such as learning tests, tasks, and exercise materials. When complex content in a WBVT is integrated into the overall didactic concept and combined with a range of video formats (films, animated graphics, game scenes, etc.), it can be conveyed much better and with more sustainable results. The use of the video medium in WBVT also enables the learning content to acquire an emotional dimension – an important prerequisite for learning in the first place. For this, high quality filming and appropriate content that ties in with the prior knowledge that learners have are indispensable. For this reason, Pink University WBVTs are developed in collaboration with experienced trainers, professors, and consultants. The WBVTs are created by a team of specialist editors, media designers, sociologists, and IT specialists, working on this basis. Together, they create WBVTs that meet with a high level of acceptance and provide assurance of sustainable development of knowledge.

Online further education

What does “online further education” mean? Online further education is a generic term for the many different options for targeted acquisition of knowledge within the scope of professional training that today exists with the support of the internet. On one hand, this can be research performed by someone online, for example, to solve a specific problem in the workplace. This very simple form of online further education can, for example, be carried out with queries on a search engine or looking up a technical term in an online encyclopedia. In a narrower sense, however, online further education refers to structured, sustained, and in-depth acquisition of knowledge on the internet. It is not unusual for this online further education to end with a final test and documentary evidence of learning or even a certificate. What forms of online further education can be found? Web-based trainings (WBTs), or online courses that function as media for self-learning, are now widespread and represent a tried and tested form of learning. In addition to image and text content, it supports the integration of interactive elements and links to other resources. Learners use this to work at their own pace and with flexibility as to time and location. Web based video training (WBVT) represents a further development of WBTs and thus a new form of online further education. WBVT harnesses the vividness and emotional dimensions imparted by the video medium and uses this as the core format for transferring knowledge. Besides this, online further education also employs many other formats that support direct exchange between learners and instructors, such as learning forums, company wikis, or virtual classrooms. Last but not least, there is also the mixed form of blended learning. Theoretical knowledge is acquired through online further education, such as by WBVT, and then the training participants meet in person to apply the knowledge collaboratively, for example, in a practical case study that they work on together.

Knowledge nuggets

Knowledge nuggets are tiny “learning bites“ – that is the shortest way of putting it. But what exactly lies behind this expression? Our brain has a strong liking for short, succinct information that can be easily absorbed and processed. This supports high rates of retention and therefore makes sustainable learning possible. Essentially, learning is always based on “bite-sized information.” Even if you have to work through a thick book to take an exam, for example, you unconsciously break down the information in that book into tiny portions, because that is all the brain is able to absorb at any given time. Knowledge nuggets, also know as learning snacks, are referred to as such because of the microlearning principle: the knowledge to be taught is divided into small, easily “digestible” bites, and presented to the learner in that form. The format of choice for knowledge nuggets is primarily videos. Either an expert works in a studio to impart specified knowledge, with support from animations or explainer graphics, or short web-based training sessions (WBTs) can be used as an alternative. What do you need to consider when creating knowledge nuggets in video format? You should not exceed 10 minutes playing time. Depending on the topic, some knowledge nuggets are as little as 30 seconds long, for example, when it is about operating a machine. Regarding content, a knowledge nugget is about a clearly outlined and self-contained topic. It’s also important that the user is able to access the knowledge nuggets at any time, that they are able to access the information they contain “on demand.” For this reason, a cloud-based approach for knowledge nuggets is especially useful. This allows knowledge nuggets to be accessed from any device that can be conceivably used for that purpose, from the PC to the smartphone.

Web-based training (WBT)

Web-based training, often abbreviated as WBT, is an online seminar that users can access and complete on screen. Web-based training thus makes it possible to have self-directed learning with flexibility as to time and place. Web-based training is internet-based and thus represents an advancement over the computer-based training (CBT) that came into use in the 1980s and was usually delivered on floppy disks or CDs. An important advantage of web-based over other learning media such as books is that WBT, which is typically produced in hypertext format, allows the user to access a wide range of interactive elements. A web-based training course can include these elements in many varied forms. Integration of audio and video sequences into a web-based training course is just as possible as the incorporation of 3D illustrations of complex models, theories, and processes. In addition, web-based training often contains a variety of illustrated material, exercises, and learning tests, along with references to further sources of information. Although users in the past often regarded web-based training as “dry,” a label also applied to its predecessor, computer-based training, today’s versions are enjoying greater popularity. In particular, the incorporation of videos into WBT means that they have stronger emotional impact, and therefore improve learner motivation. Web-based training in which learning videos are used as the core medium is referred to as web-based video training, or WBVT for short. This form of training is offered by Pink University in an independent format.

Webinar

The webinar is an interactive variant of e-learning, or distance learning conducted with electronic media. It is different from a webcast, which provides only one-way transmission of information available on demand. A webinar is interactive. That means that it’s possible for instructors and students to communicate with each other. Virtual learning has steadily gained popularity following the growth in internet coverage. Many universities have considerably expanded their online study offerings. However, a major shortcoming in knowledge transfer of this kind was lack of direct interaction between participants because of the physical distances involved. This is where webinars offer a solution. Webinars have a characteristic of being live. That means the information is conveyed within a certain time window. The lecturer’s verbal presentations often supplement the on-screen presentations. This is achieved with the use of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). Meanwhile, several persons are able to talk simultaneously over VoIP, which recreates direct interaction among the participants at least on an audio-based level. Other options for interaction include the uploading and downloading of files, communication in chatrooms, and participation in surveys. A further advantage of webinars is that they permit a large number of participants. Webinar software is available from Spreed, Citrix, or Webex, as well as others. Depending on what form it takes, webinars are also referred to as live webcasts, online seminars, or web conferences.