Entries by Will Thalheimer

Are Wiki’s Inherently Flawed?

Wiki’s are all the rage in the training and development industry, but are they really workable? Wikipedia is the most popular wiki in the world. It compiles information when users add, modify, or delete entries. Wikipedia is intended to mimic an encyclopedia, but wikis have other uses. For example, the Learning 2005 conference used a […]

How Google Can Facilitate Learning

Google’s mission is "to make the world’s information universally accessible and useful." Good for Google. But implied in this statement is that the world’s information should be universally accessible and useful TO ACTUAL INDIVIDUAL HUMAN BEINGS. This is a very important clarifier. Why? Because IF information is for the use of humans, it must be […]

Adobe Buys Macromedia

Yesterday, December 5th 2005, Adobe bought Macromedia. Macromedia is dead. Adobe lives. Long live the king. Who knows what this will mean (I’m no industry analyst—who has time for such a thing when one is serious about learning), but it’s a very big deal because one of the learning-and-performance field’s biggest technology-platform companies (Macromedia) just […]

Conversational Writing is Better than Formal Writing

Research has shown that a conversational writing style is generally more effective at producing learning results than more formal writing. See a blog blurb by Kathy Sierra to learn more. She did a nice job of writing a review of a 2000 study by Moreno and Mayer from the Journal of Educational Psychology. Also, check […]

Why is Research Knowledge Not Utilized

This blurb is reprised from an earlier Work-Learning Research Newsletter, circa 2002. These "classic" pieces are offered again to make them available permanently on the web. Also, they’re just good fun. I’ve added an epilogue to the piece below. "What prevents people in the learning-and-performance field from utilizing proven instructional-design knowledge?" Recently, I’ve spoken with […]

Aligning the Learning and Performance Contexts

Research from the world’s preeminent refereed journals on learning and instruction shows that by aligning the learning and performance contexts, learning results can be improved by substantial amounts. In fact, it is this alignment that makes simulations effective, that creates the power behind hands-on training, and that enables action learning to produce its most profound […]

Learning in the Citizenry

Learning is a many-splendored thing. Want evidence? Consider the overabundance of theories of learning. Greg Kearsley has a nice list. To me, this overabundance is evidence that the human learning system has not yet been lassoed and cataloged with any great precision. Ironic that DNA is easier to map than learning. Being a political junkie, […]


Cell Phones While Driving

There have been several published studies (and even more newspaper articles) that show cell-phone use while driving is correlated with accidents. The suggestion from these studies is that cell phones CAUSE accidents. The implication is that we should ban cell phones while driving. This may be true. I was scared to death last week while […]