With the growing wealth of online learning materials, knowing how to curate training content is becoming exceedingly important for a comprehensive blended learning strategy. That's because it filters the best training and development materials while allowing learners to find the resources best suited for their individual needs. And this post explains the ins and outs of L&D content curation, including how you can use xAPI to track external resources.
Content Curation Tools & Methods
As the quality and availability of external professional development resources evolve and improve, many third-party learning materials are as good as or even better than what could be produced in-house.
And this means recreating those materials could be a serious waste of time, money, and resources. That's why it's so important to consider a mix of in-house and external content to create a well-rounded approach to blended learning.
Learning designers can take several approaches when it comes to curation. For instance, external content may be cross-linked within internal training materials or shared directly via social media platforms or content management systems.
These approaches can provide more control, but they also can be tedious and time consuming—especially when learning designers don’t have HTML or coding expertise.
A more effective approach is delegating curation to learners. For example, learners can rate or vote on a shared resource's usefulness. The more votes materials have, the more they're promoted. Learners can also follow one another to narrow the focus of resources they see in their own areas of interest.
Why Curate Training If Learners Can Search for What They Need?
There’s an argument that search engines like Google reduce the need for curation. After all, if learners can find what they want on their own, they don’t need curated content—right?
While search engines can be beneficial in the learning process, what begins as a simple search can quickly render thousands of results—many of which are irrelevant. Now, not only are learners frustrated by having to eliminate unnecessary content but they're also prevented from focusing on their main tasks.
Curation, on the other hand, gives learners the advantage of discovering materials that are accurate, helpful, and on topic.
Pro Tip: Encourage learners to provide feedback about training resources. For example, a learner sharing a resource might note that the third paragraph is especially relevant, but the diagrams aren't needed. This feedback helps other learners reviewing that resource quickly pinpoint the most relevant content and apply any related principles within your organization.
How to Use xAPI to Track External Training Resources
Many organizations use xAPI to track learners via external internet-based resources. This xAPI data is not only used to report on learning experiences, but the data can also power a curation tool.
For example, tessello by Brightwave enables learners to record their experiences on the internet via an xAPI bookmarklet. Learners can then easily share their experiences and resources with others via tessello's curation tool.
xAPI also can support curation more directly, promoting learners' most commonly visited resources. This approach, however, requires a large learner base (e.g., 100 learners) to access and bookmark the same resources to produce valuable results.
Up Next: Learning Happens Everywhere
The next installment in our series will discuss how you can track, capture, and report on blended learning. Don't miss out!
About the author
As a co-author of xAPI, Andrew has been instrumental in revolutionizing the way we approach data-driven learning design. With his extensive background in instructional design and development, he’s an expert in crafting engaging learning experiences and a master at building robust learning platforms in both corporate and academic environments. Andrew’s journey began with a simple belief: learning should be meaningful, measurable, and, most importantly, enjoyable. This belief has led him to work with some of the industry’s most innovative organizations and thought leaders, helping them unlock the true potential of their learning strategies. Andrew has also shared his insights at conferences and workshops across the globe, empowering others to harness the power of data in their own learning initiatives.
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