Building Bridges

Drink Up the Learning, Bar by Bar

Looking for a fun night out? You could head off to your favorite neighborhood dive – or, er, brew pub – and grab a burger and a couple of beers. You’d see the same regulars and the familiar, weathered interior of the pub. And you’d enjoy the comforting routine...though in the back of your mind, [...]

The Blue Lagoon: Using Multiple Senses to Improve Learning

In our last blog post we saw how immersive, sensory events can help us remember experiences, using the example of my trip to the Blue Lagoon spa.  We don’t need to visit a spa to help learners remember, though...we can create immersive experiences to enhance our instructional design. Here are two examples of physically immersive [...]

Soaking in an Icelandic Spa: How Senses and Memory Intersect

This summer, my husband and I traveled to Iceland. Among other wonders of nature, we visited the Blue Lagoon, a spa formed 40 years ago during the creation of a geothermal power plant. Today, people come from all over to bathe in the warm, soothing water. There are a surprising number of things to do [...]

Performing a Symphony — of Learning & Development

I happen to be a big music lover, and enjoy both listening and performing as a flutist in the Sharon Concert Band. At last week’s band rehearsal our conductor, Steve, was doing his usual great job of keeping us on tempo, signaling when each section needs to come in, and gesturing to show we should [...]

Heating Things Up: Pilots Provide Useful Feedback

Practicing a classroom course polishes and improves it. Typically, practice comes with a pilot, during which instructional designers and trainers iron out classroom kinks. Two pilots (an abbreviated pre-pilot and a full pilot) were employed in a class entitled Operationalizing Emergency Plans: Incident Command in Action, on which EnVision consulted for a public agency. The [...]

Short Can be More Than Just Sweet!

What do stained glass windows, intricate marble carvings, and richly symbolic murals have in common? Give up? They are all easily seen from just one spot in the Library of Congress. Why do I mention this? I recently visited Washington, DC and toured the Library of Congress. If you haven’t been to the Library, I [...]

The Pick of the Crop

Have you ever gone berry picking? Usually, you fill a container and pay by its size. Those juicy berries look so appealing you want to fit as many as possible into the container, right? Would you squish them in to get more? Or would you select the ripest berries to ensure excellent quality and highest [...]

The Course Pilot and a Wedding? More Alike than You Think.

The bridesmaids donned light green dresses with intricate lace overlays. Before the ceremony, the ketubah (marriage contract) was signed by the groom. The groomsmen and bridal party enjoyed sushi and potato pancakes with smoked salmon in separate rooms before the wedding. At the appointed time, both groups entered the ballroom, awaiting the arrival of the […]

When Learning Becomes Too Much: Seven Ways to Reduce Cognitive Overload

Have you ever been in a class where everyone’s eyes are glazed over? By the end of the first half-day, participants stop, well, participating? Perhaps the course just isn’t engaging them. Or, perhaps (cue music: dut, dut, dut) they are experiencing cognitive overload. So, what is cognitive overload? Cognitive overload is an inundation of short-term […]

Blended Learning: Look Before You Leap

Blended learning tools provide an instructional designer with many options, but more choices can also be confusing. How do you determine if the blended solution meets your learning objectives? How do you know which modalities to pick? And finally, how do you know that your mix will work within the culture of your organization? To […]