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Online Learning News – 2 May issue


A news and idea service of Bill Communications Inc.

Tuesday, May 2, 2000 Vol. 3, No. 6

Click on http://www.TrainSeek.comfor the most
comprehensive e-marketplace of training products and
services. Find, preview, compare and buy training. Fast.


1. Easing e-stress on learners
4. Off with the talking head
3. Online-game sites
2. Go Boolean
5. Tick, tick: 60-second KM
5. Cries for help: Stuck in the '70s?
6. Web check: Customer training, course rating


Are you tense about technology? No wonder. Key problems
learners face online are:

o Difficulty finding and accessing e-learning
information (Web addresses, file servers, download
sites, third-party sites).

o Slow connections.

o Obtaining, installing and learning to use
hardware, software and plug-ins for e-learning.

o Lack of technical support.

o Inconsistent communication and marketing about
e-learning programs.

That partial list is from the upcoming issue of
Technology for Learning Newsletter. Here's another
partial list -- remedies:

o Organize and consolidate project information (e-mail
systems, collaboration tools, documents and news).
Make sure people know where to get information.

o Develop content with your entire strategy in view.
Course goals must follow a straight line to your
core objectives, so learners know exactly why
they’re taking the course.

o Implement your e-learning program in manageable
chunks. Don’t overwhelm learners.


Read Associate Editor Wendy Webb's article on buffering
your learners against e-stress in the print version of
the June Technology for Learning Newsletter.

It tells more about how to help learners cope -- and how
trainers can stave off e-mania anxiety themselves.

To receive the June TFL, click Subscriptions at

If you complete and submit the short form there BY
THURSDAY, MAY 4, you will receive the June issue -- yours
to keep, gratis, even if you subsequently choose not to


Q Readers, how serious is the problem of stress in an
e-learning setting -- both for learners and for

Q What are the key reasons learners are stressed?

Q What are your best measures to alleviate e-stress
on learners? On yourself?

Respond to [email protected] . Very important:
Include your name and title, your organization, its
location, what it does, and a phone at which we can reach
you. Your subject line: Busting E-Stress.



Someone asked where to learn how to present on video,
including via Web or satellite.

TereLyn Hepple ( [email protected] ) suggests
Teletraining Institute (
of Stillwater, OK.

"Judy and George Snyder were dynamic, humorous
instructors who helped to humanize the videoconference,"
says Hepple, an instructional designer with with SBC
Communications Inc. in Farmer's Branch, TX.

"They taught what makes a good distance educator, how to
facilitate remote participation, how to control the
machinery, how to create great graphics, and how to get
incisively creative with the cameras.

"I highly recommend using their techniques to avoid the
talking head."



How do you find games and activities online for your
training sessions? That was the plaint of a reader last
week ("It's Out There II," April 27).

Todd M. Holbert ( [email protected] ),
computer-systems educational administrator with
Universal Underwriters Insurance Group in Overland
Park, KS, suggests this site for a Jeopardy game:

The game, says Holbert, is "easy to download and fully
customizable." And learners like it: "Our classes look
forward to reviews now," Holbert exults.

Also, BNH Expert Software Inc. of Montreal offers
free demo downloads of its online games at



How do you eliminate health and fitness-training sites
from your list of results when you're searching for
job-training information? Go Boolean.

Boolean searches take their name from the 19th century
British logician George Boole. His Boolean algebra is of
vital importance to computers -- and to you, if you're
searching for something on the Web.

Let Dan Timlin ( [email protected] ) explain:

In AltaVista's Advanced Search area, to use one search
engine as an example, construct your search string as:

training and not fitness and not health

This should pull up all the Web sites that have the word
"training," and eliminate those with either the words
"health" or "fitness."

"People should read the instructions for constructing
searches to see if their search engine of choice supports
'not' searches," says Timlin, information and technology
manager with communication-skills trainer Ridge
Associates Inc. ( in Minneapolis.

"If the site doesn't," he adds, "find one that does."



Technology for Learning Newsletter Editor Brandon Hall
notes that nominations are still wide open for companies
you think are ahead of the curve in e-learning.

For information on how to nominate companies you
think are exemplary at e-learning, go to Click Services.

The best-practices initiative also seeks experienced
e-learning practitioners to act as judges to screen
nominated companies.

Hall's hunt to benchmark e-learning best practices is
distinct from the Sunnyvale, CA, e-learning researcher's
Hall of Fame Awards.


Q Readers, what practices do you think Hall's
study of e-learning will find at the top of the
best-practices list? Why?

Respond to [email protected] . Very important:
Include your name and title, your organization, its
location, what it does, and a phone at which we can reach
you. Your subject line: E-Learning Best-Practices.


o Read more about Hall's benchmarking study at

o Hall will speak and lead a follow-up discussion
June 6 at Training Directors' Forum Conference
in Phoenix. His subject both times is "Online
Learning: The State of the Industry." Register



Another top-drawing session at Training Directors' Forum
Conference is "Leading Company Benchmarks in Training and
Development" June 7 with consultant Dennis Kravetz. More
information about the June 4-7 conference in Phoenix is



We've asked for your one-minute definition of knowledge
management -- because that may be all the time you get to
pitch it to your top managers ("60-second knowledge
management," April 11).

Stopwatches ready? Here's Gwen Thomas
( [email protected] ), corporate knowledge manager at
PaySys International Inc., a Maitland, FL, credit-card
software maker:

"Knowledge management is the systematic approach to
helping the enterprise make money, save money, be
competitive, and make better decisions by managing how
information is gathered, stored, and shared across the

"It's a business discipline whose currency is
information, and it involves managing how new information
assets are created and how existing assets are

"It addresses the behavior of individuals and groups as
well as specifying the most appropriate tools and
repositories, with a goal of helping everyone achieve
access to the right information at the right time, so
they can turn that information into the knowledge needed
to bring value to the organization."

While Thomas catches her breath, have a look at these
sessions at the upcoming Training Directors Forum
Conference in Phoenix:

o "Integrating Knowledge Management with Online
Learning" is a June 5 breakout with consultant
James Li.

o "Knowledge Management: The View from the Trenches"
with Rosaline Tsai of Lawson Software University
is another June 5 breakout.

o "Reaching the Future Faster" is a keynote address
June 6 by Leif Edvinsson, CEO with Universal
Networking Intellectual Capital. Edvinsson
supervised preparation of the first corporate
Intellectual Capital Annual Report.

o "Enabling Knowledge Management Via Electronic
Performance Support," a case-study workshop with
IBM's Tony O'Driscoll, is a pre-conference session
June 4 (costs $295 extra for attendees).

To register or get more information, go to



Readers? Can you help your peers with these questions?

STUCK IN THE '70s? "I'm looking for any guidance
in the writing of simulations for training. I have been
working on a computer project for the past three years
and we are almost finished, but to get the program
mainstreamed in to the agency we'll need to develop more

"We're looking for anybody that might have guidelines or
information on the subject. We are using a 1970
publication and would like to see if anything is more

SALES S.M.E.-SPEAK? "Part of the Web-based
learning we develop in our organization is geared toward
sales forces on the solutions we offer and the industries
we sell to.

"We would like to do a better job of communicating with
our subject-matter experts to gather our source material.
Additionally, we would like to improve the way we share
the information with our primary audience, the sales

"We are trying to locate information and courses on how
to gather information from sales personnel and how to
communicate information to them. How can we better speak
their language? We'll consider anything from books to
articles to courses to speakers."

READERS? If you can guide your peers on one
of the foregoing questions, please respond to
[email protected] . Use the subject line of the
question to which you're responding (e.g., Stuck in the

VERY IMPORTANT: Include your name and title, your
organization, its location, what it does, and a phone at
which we can reach you.


Your colleagues may have some ideas for your
online-learning quandary. Please send your question to
[email protected] . Please include a distinctive
subject line.


PAY AS YOU GO. inc. of Bellevue,
WA, announced it would distribute online courses and
other learning products for Catapult, an IBM Corp. unit.
The pay-as-you-go courses will include Windows, Microsoft
Office, and Lotus Notes. will also
provide browser-based course management, and add 35
Catapult courses to the site.

COURSE-RATING SITE. Why not develop a rating
system for online training? A reader asked that question
last week ("It's Out There II," April 27). Vendor Online
Learning Network Inc. of Olympia, WA, responds that its site does rate courses.


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