As I read online, I bookmark resources I find interesting and useful. I share these links periodically here on my blog. This post includes links on research on high-fidelity simulations and discovery learning, course pricing, and free, diverse stock images.
Research on learning
Does a high-fidelity simulation produce better results than a low-fidelity simulation? This meta analysis didn’t find a significant advantage, at least in training for clinical and patient care skills. That doesn’t mean some other skills wouldn’t benefit from high-fidelity simulations, but it does support the idea that the lower cost simulations can still provide positive results.
This is an interesting research summary related to the differences between direct instruction and discovery learning. Instead of approaching these strategies as all or nothing, where one is right in all situations and the other is wrong in all situations, they looked more at when each strategy is more likely to work. This also helps address some of the issues in the research done in lab settings, which don’t always translate to the reality of actual teaching and training. While this blog focuses more on education than workplace training, I think the idea of “high structure” versus “low structure” may be more useful as a framework in workplace training than the typical dichotomy between direct instruction and discovery learning. A lot of project-based “discovery learning,” after all, is pretty heavily structured and scaffolded.
They see discovery learning and direct instruction not as two different things, but as ends of a continuum:
“No learning experience is pure: students given direct instruction often find themselves struggling to discover what the teacher means, and all discovery situations involve some minimal amount of guidance.”
We should use high-structure pedagogy with novices, who are early in schema formation. And, we should use low-structure pedagogy with experts, who are later in the process of schema formation.-Andrew Watson, including his quote of Brunstein, Betts, and Anderson (2009).
LinkedIn post by Dr. Philippa Hardman with tips for creating an online course as a side hustle. While I don’t think most people are going to be making the kinds of profit she is (please don’t think you’re going to make that much in passive income–you probably won’t), the pricing tiers made sense to me. More time spent by the instructor and lower ratios = higher prices.
Course creators consistently under value their courses. Completion rates are 61% higher when online courses cost $200 or higher. Per-seat prices are higher when courses offer a “beyond YouTube” experience – i.e. participation, creation & connection.
These tiers work well for me:
- Premium: ~4 hrs of my time per week: £500-£1k per seat, cohort-instructor ratio of 1:20
- Mid: ~1-3 hrs of my time per per week: £250-£500 per seat, cohort-instructor ratio of 1:50
- Scale: ~1-3 hrs of my time per per month: £100-£250 per seat, cohort-instructor ratio of 1:infinite
Diverse stock photos
Collection of free images with inclusive representation of disability, race, hair, body type, and more. These are all posed images, mostly with models looking directly at the camera and smiling while wearing coordinated outfits. These probably wouldn’t be the most useful for elearning courses, but it’s still a source to bookmark for those times when you specifically need to show diversity.