In April Limestone Learning was invited to present at a Royal Roads University (RRU) annual online conference (virtual symposium) for adult learners starting the Graduate Diploma or Master of Arts in Learning and Technology (LRNT) program.
The symposium is designed as the opening event for the first LRNT course. It also forms part of the first assignment, where learners write a paper connecting ideas from the symposium to course readings.
Learners are from various instructional contexts (e.g., higher education, K–12, corporate) and can participate online synchronously or asynchronously through recordings. The intent is to orient learners to the broad field of learning and technology through virtual presentations made by academics, learning professionals and current students in the program. Limestone was asked to bring a perspective on the learning consulting world to the symposium’s conversation around “openness, networked learning and the cultivation of a digital mindset.”
The Limestone presentation was a team facilitation that brought together two perspectives:
Paula as a Managing Partner with over 35 years of experience in the field of learning.
Nicolette as a Limestone contractor and a current RRU Master’s student in Learning and Technology (MALAT).
In determining our topic, “Developing Connections with Our Clients and Learning Communities,” Paula and I wanted to ensure that we shared relevant ideas that represented real-life applications of the course’s content—digital learning environments, communities and networks. Our goal was to link to a variety of concepts from students’ readings to benefit their learning.
Overall, we emphasized the importance of achieving success in instructional design through building connections with our clients. We went through examples of how Limestone interacts with its own community as well as with the greater North American learning communities (i.e., through our team newsletter, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blog posts and Lambda webinars). Our presentation included open-ended questions to engage learners and gain insights into what they were doing to connect with learners and communities.
What became apparent to me was the relevancy of the course content to today’s world of learning and how connections made through face-to-face and online relationships have led to Limestone’s success. We received some great questions, including whether we felt “left out” in the design process if we were not familiar with the subject matter and whether the newsletter contributed to a team atmosphere at Limestone (a resounding yes!).
I enjoyed the opportunity to facilitate an online session alongside Paula, and felt that it enabled us to both share in each other’s experiences. I gained a better understanding of learning consulting through the stories Paula shared, and Paula gained a better understanding of how the MALAT program contributes to my work at Limestone. We had good engagement from learners, who I know from my own experience may be hesitant to participate, as they are new to each other and may be returning to school after 10 to 30 years in the workforce. I was most excited that some students acted on our key message and have since connected with us to continue the conversation.
Thank you to Paula for her hard work and time in joining me to contribute real-world knowledge to this program and for lending students (including me) an experienced perspective to bring forward in their respective instructional contexts.
Guest blogger Nicolette Young is a Vancouver-based freelance instructional designer, course author and learning consultant. With over nine years of experience designing, customizing and facilitating corporate learning solutions, she’s always on the lookout for projects where she can help to optimize the learner experience. Nicolette's been working with Limestone Learning since 2018 and is currently pursuing her Master of Arts in Learning and Technology at Royal Roads University.
Connect with her at www.linkedin.com/in/nicoletteyoung.