June 16, 2014

As I’ve posted many times, e-Learning rooted in full motion video, animations, simulations and optional word-for-word audio offers the worlds of Training and Education the best opportunities for learning.

Without doubt, multi-sensory media is part of the informational and instructional evolutionary process that has taken us beyond storytelling, the printing press, and radio wave transmission. Multi-sensory media is a communication tool. It makes possible more efficient information transfer and more effective learning.

Who then, among us, must we look to — to lead us forward? Certainly not the producers of the various technology platforms. By their very nature, those producers must remain “box sellers.”

Gutenberg spent his adult life perfecting a machine that was instrumental in bringing knowledge to the world he knew. We owe him much for, due to the printing press, knowledge could then be readily attained through the conceptual transfer that took place between the printed words of an author and the eyes and minds of that author’s readers.

So it is today with multi-sensory media. The promise of multi-sensory media will only be attained when the applications designer can effectively communicate with the users’ senses — be they sight, sound, and/or touch.

The human animal remains a sense-taught creature. And, multi-sensory media provides the best artificial platform available for stimulating the senses of a would-be learner.

Not everyone can be an effective multi-sensory media designer. In fact, very few can. But, the few that can should lead us. Those few will show us how to use the new media for better education and training. Some will build effective commercial generic programs. Some will build effective custom application programs. But the few that can will build those applications around one basic tenet: learner-controlled, multi-sensory instruction!

We must guard ourselves against infatuation. All the newer technologies hold promise. All can be effective tools, but none of them are answers. The answers for this century will come from a new breed of “authors” and “artists.” Those who know that training and education are irrevocably linked today — linked by the necessity of transferring control of learning to the learner through multi-sensory instruction.

More on Wednesday – – – – –

— Bill Walton, Founder of ITC Learning