Raymond G. Fox passed away Monday.

To anyone committed to technology based learning systems for education and training, please know that we have lost a giant. To view the Washington Post obituary link please click here.

Ray founded The Society for Applied Learning Technology (SALT) in logo-salt11972 and served as its president until recently when his highly capable son, John, assumed those responsibilities. SALT is a professional society that provides a means to enhance knowledge and job performance in the field of applied learning technology through sponsored meetings and publications.

SALT’s two annual national conferences (Orlando in February and DC in August) attract the more serious developers in the field and traditionally give us insight into the future directions of technology based learning systems.

Anyone with an interest in technology based education and training should try to get Ray’s booklet, Commentaries on Technology Based Learning Systems, which was published by SALT in 2001. Ray continued to give us insights through his “Letter from the President” which was published in the SALT newsletter quarterly.

For those of you who may not be familiar with Ray’s perceptive ideas, I will quote a brief section of his Winter 2006 “Letter from the President”:
Today, despite the capability for technology based instruction delivery systems and internet access to resources, the prevailing school model adheres to the “teacher in the classroom” delivery system and the lack of precision in defining what is to be accomplished, learner by learner.
The underlying problem is the lack of systematic analysis and delineation of precisely defined educational objectives and the specific factoids and content to be learned in accomplishing this. Present SOLs do not do this. The ever-increasing cost of education is mainly a function of this in that failure is perceived as a lack of funds and the solution is to hire more school personnel, build more structures rather than initiating and conducting a systematic development of educational needs as they relate to each individual.
This is a perfect prescription to prevent the introduction of technology based systems (which require specificity), individualization (which technology based systems could provide) and reduced cost – by utilizing machine oriented delivery, assessment, and management information systems.

I had the unique pleasure of knowing and working with Ray. A generous and brilliant man who remained committed to technology based learning throughout his long and productive life. He will be missed.

More on Tuesday – – – – –

— Bill Walton, Founder of ITC Learning