Blog Archives

mLearning and Interface Usability

Mobile learning isn’t going away as companies and higher education institutions are seeing the benefits of mLearning. Mobile devices and their use are growing exponentially. Currently mobile devices are used more to access the Internet than desktops. While that reality has been the case since 2009, what is even more amazing to wrap our minds around is the reality that Americans “are spending, on average, 2.7 hours a day on the mobile Internet” (Quinn, 2011, p.7). The large number of … [Read More]


Business Systems Applied to Academics

Rob Hartman and I presented a session on systems thinking and mindset at Association of Business Administrators of Christian Colleges (ABACC) on February 13, which was an excellent experience. With his expertise on finance and mine on academics, we were able to bridge the gap that gets created between these two essential two departments on developing mindsets of how to thrive rather than merely survive. This entailed an introduction of Real Options where we showed part of Dan North’s vimeo … [Read More]


Being a practitioner manager, not an administrator

Despite being in a highly operational role, there has been tremendous value discovered in maintaining a practitioner’s viewpoint as a faculty member as well. I frequently facilitate courses just like any other online adjunct faculty member, and this recently offered me another opportunity to improve administrative processes.


Kanban Moves Upward in Academic Administration

This is the story of the Princess and the Pea. Sort of. Actually, this is the story of how administration felt the effects of kanban being used in areas that were not immediately visible. Only in this case, the effect the pea (kanban) had on the princess was so positive that she demanded more peas!


Practicing Agile in Curriculum Design

Scott Marsee, my lead instructional designer, and I were fortunate in our networking at the ASTD 2012 conference this past January with our introduction to Dr. Steven Villachica, a tenured associate professor at Boise State University’s School of Engineering. He is currently teaching an advanced instructional design course for master level students, and when he heard of our successful agile curriculum design techniques, asked if we would present a webinar to his students. This was a wonderful opportunity to get … [Read More]


Systemic Resolution in Curriculum Design

There is a certain amount of pride that I have with our current curriculum development process in that it is very systemic to reduce conflicting information and formatting across courses as well as addressing academic rigor necessary for a top quality degree programme. However, there are several levels of system resolutions available for curriculum design, including the facilitator level. We have started developing communities of practice to represent each expertise area so that while faculty cannot physically change the curriculum … [Read More]


Ensuring Students Hold Faculty Accountable

As educators for adult learners we are passionate about providing awareness and motivation to students. We research, study, design and implement methods to improve the learning experience. The cornerstone of strategies involves adult and social learning theories, and we seek to ensure those theories stay current. Our curriculum is stellar, full of experiential learning, reflection, and tools for successful critical thinking. We pour hours of investment into faculty training. However, in our excitement for the world of andragogy, we easily … [Read More]


Instructional Design Applied to Agile Coaching

Agile coaching requires observant facilitation with an ability to engage learners actively. This parallels almost identically with accelerated adult learning at the university level. “Guide on the side” instead of “sage on the stage” is a common mantra necessary for all effective facilitators to embrace when motivating adult learners. There are scores of interactive instructional strategies that not only provide relevance to the learners, but also allows for quantifiable assessment of the learning growth. However, for this post, I will … [Read More]


Reducing Attrition for Online Learners

Despite the growth for online and asynchronous learning, there remains a very high attrition level as well. This can be attributed to a number of things, but the most commonly identified in research include low self-efficacy or self-regulation, as well as a lack of external or internal motivators. While researchers have been kind enough to identify the biggest obstacles educators have to overcome, the strategies to overcome such difficulties are not always so obvious. Hee Jun and Park (2009) developed … [Read More]


Applying Agile to Curriculum Development

Agile in a university setting can sometimes be an oxymoron. However, it can successfully occur within university administration, as I have personally experienced. Specifically in the context of the online education team, agile tools were bastardised to give curriculum designers increased productivity and improved motivation. This allowed the designers to provide better quality and cutting edge courses in less time. The online educational team implemented and shared a personal kanban, dropped job descriptions, and saw massive improvements throughout. Scrum was … [Read More]


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About Marian

My passion is centered around ensuring effective learning experiences that improve people's lives. Developing a learning mindset is my ultimate goal whether working with academic programs or corporate training; formal or informal learning practices. It is my belief that our potential for agility is limited only by our capacity for learning.

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