What is Distributed Learning? [Introduction]


People have an inherent desire to learn, but how we learn best is still up for debate. In this series, we explore trends related to distributed learning and what they mean in practice.

What is distributed learning?

Generally speaking, we learn through a variety of methods. And while these methods can be effective tools, only a small portion occur within the context of formal training—which is where many L&D teams focus most of their energy.

A Changing Perspective

We’re starting to see a change in how people view training methods. The growing popularity of the 70:20:10 model, for example, is helping L&D leaders focus on informal and social learning activities. This trend has generally been positive and spurred the development of interesting products, projects, and technologies around this way of thinking.

Key Takeaways

In this series, we explain how you can track and report on distributed learning and how you can support and encourage these experiences within your organization’s workforce to produce more effective informal training.

We focus on the following topics while discussing their relevance, exploring practical implications, and providing helpful tips on how you can track and measure learning with xAPI and other methods.

  1. The 70:20:10 Model
  2. The Internet & Your Organization
  3. 70:20:10 & xAPI
  4. Microlearning
  5. A Guide to Content Curation & Distributed Learning
  6. Content Curation: External Resources & xAPI
  7. Data Capture Strategies
  8. Prioritization, Step 1: Identify
  9. Prioritization, Step 2: Track
  10. Prioritization, Step 3: Learn
  11. Prioritization, Step 4: Act
  12. Capturing Social Learning
  13. Supporting Informal Learning
  14. Supporting Work-Based Learning
  15. Supporting Self-Directed Learning
  16. Challenging Negative Learning

eBook: Essentials of Learning Evaluation

To get the most out of this series, download the following eBook.

 eGuide: Essentials of Learning Evaluation

[Editor's Note: This blog post was originally posted on November 17, 2016, and has been updated for comprehensiveness.]

Andrew Downes

About The Author

As one of the authors of xAPI, Andrew Downes has years of expertise in data-driven learning design. With a background in instructional design and development, he’s well versed in creating learning experiences and platforms in corporate and academic environments.