Work-Learning Research in 2006 will undertake some ambitious initiatives.

  1. I’m going to come out with a book on Instructional Design. My goal is to make it the most important book on instructional design since Gagne. Tall order, I know. But if I’m going to go to all the trouble to write a book, why not make it a damn good one.
  2. LearningAudit.com has been launched, Work-Learning Research’s research benchmarking and evaluation service to help organizations and instructional designers learn from their efforts. If we—who tout ourselves as learning experts—can’t learn and improve our own practices, we’re not only being hypocritical, but we’re not creating the most effective learning designs.
  3. I’ve also launched a new program to help organizations build their knowledge and competency around research-based instructional design. The idea behind this program is simple. You invite me into your world, and we learn together over several days. The intimate setting helps you and your team build a deep understanding of human learning—based on the world’s best learning research, of course. Call me to find out more.
  4. Work-Learning Research will continue to release more research reports and white papers on research-based practice.

The theme for 2006 is to focus on the major leverage points that are available to improve learning design and development. When I asked myself, "How can Work-Learning Research help to facilitate more effective learning, my answer was this:

  • Continue to bridge research and practice, especially by helping to translate research into practical recommendations.
  • Provide the field with a way to learn from their efforts. Because the feedback loop in our field is so impoverished, we learn and improve much too slowly. LearningAudit.com was a response to this problem.
  • Highlight the good work of instructional designers who are using research-based practices (whether they may know it or not). By shining a spotlight on good design, we help everyone learn.

Good luck to all in 2006. May we learn. May we help others learn.

It’s time for a change.

The Work-Learning Research Newsletter is becoming the Work-Learning Journal. In the short term, the content will consist of the same kind of pithy research-based commentary I’ve always aimed to deliver. In the long term, you’ll probably see some additions as well, but those plans will have to remain a secret for now.

The big change for the moment is the delivery mechanism. I’ll still send you an email reminder, but the content will now be contained in a blog-like format. This has several benefits:

  1. You can post your comments, so we can learn from each other.
  2. The content will remain where you can access it—online all the time.
  3. Others can link to it and share our intelligence far and wide.
  4. You can subscribe using your aggregator. If you don’t know what one is, you will within the next year or so.
  5. We can all learn about Web 2.0 and what it means for learning.

In addition to publishing a monthly newsletter, I’m going to write a blog as well. You can check out the beginnings of that effort at www.willatworklearning.com.

The Newsletter is dead. Long live the Work-Learning Journal.

By the way, if you’re not yet on one or more of our email-reminder mailing lists, you can subscribe at this location.