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Creativity Meets Technology Case Study Presentation May 29, 2013

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Join us on Thursday, June 20, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM at the LaSalle University – MetroPlex Corporate Center for an exciting case study presentation on an open source content management system as a smart engine behind an interactie blended learning solution at Comcast University.

The first time Comcast University ran pilots of the New Hire Experience, an interactive blended learning program, learners literally tried to sneak in from legacy classes. This blended learning program seamlessly presents learners with a visual roadmap of wide variety of activities throughout the new hire experience (eLearnings, “gamified” quick challenges, videos, simulations, documents, links, etc.).

Behind this effective program is a database driven smart engine. The engine handles hundreds of activities in thousands of classes (with customized content for certain groups), and does it on the fly! That means the content the learner sees is tailored to their exact needs. That’s Joomla!, an award winning open source CMS tool.

Come and experience how Comcast University has harnessed this powerful open source technology using a creative approach to resolve challenges like:

  • Allow non-technical people to create, edit and maintain content (without messing with XML).
  • Provide a template that is consistent through all classes but allow the flexibility to customize the content.
  • Reduce speed to market for minor changes (from days to minutes).
  • Be flexible to turn on and off activities or change their order.
  • Display information only relevant to users (based on groups, markets, role or class).
  • Find a quality solution that is scalable, cost effective and user-friendly.


This presentation focuses on how the open source engine addresses all these expectations. While we will touch on the content itself, our main focus will be how creativity meets technology using Joomla!.

About the Speaker
Zsolt is a Program Manager at the Comcast University Wireless Operations team, where he oversees the curriculum design, development and delivery for the Comcast – Verizon Wireless learning initiatives across several States.

Zsolt has an extensive project and program management background, as well as more than a decade of learning and development experience. Zsolt’s passion to combine creativity and technology goes back to his thesis, which was to build an artificial neuron-network in C++ capable of learning how to add two numbers together. Since then, Zsolt has worked in the instructional design and eLearning development field with companies like Pepsi, Nokia, Siemens, IBM, Oracle, and for the last five years, Comcast. Zsolt is well-versed in most of the top eLearning applications and has working knowledge of several programming languages. Zsolt has also designed and taught an information design and delivery university curriculum for the University of Debrecen in his native country, Hungary.

To sign up for this event, click here: http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07e78suylb744347e7


Taking Your Training to Tahiti (or Tel Aviv) by Frank Felsburg May 6, 2013

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Frank Felsburg will be presenting “Taking Your Training to Tahiti (or Tel Aviv) on Thursday evening, May 16th, starting at 6:00 PM at the LaSalle University Metroplex Center in Plymouth Meeting.

Felsburg’s presentation addresses such issues as cross-cultural differences, global human resource development and language barriers. Using a collaborative approach and experiential learning, ways to overcome these challenges are realized.

Felsburg’s presentation will help attendees:

  •          Build more effective training from a global perspective
  •          Recognize content that needs to be localized before it is translated
  •          Define ways to save money on translation

Following the session, attendees will think more internationally, especially from a performance improvement standpoint. They will be able to utilize the information presented immediately afterwards.

Frank Felsburg is an account executive with Magnum Group. He works with organizations that want to communicate globally and optimize their international presence. A large percentage of his clients are in the Training & Development sector. Magnum translates and localizes their training content for non-English speaking learners.

Felsburg has worked with organizations to help them produce foreign-language versions of online training modules as well as presentations and workbooks for instructor-led training. He’s Past President of the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of ASTD and now serves on ASTD National’s Chapter Recognition Committee.

Felsburg has delivered stand-up training in the areas of customer service, sales and communication skills and has also worked for a custom eLearning development company. A graduate of Villanova University, he is the author of numerous articles and a book on listening.

For more information or to sign up for the event, click here: http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07e78srqu313da0ac5

Captivate Joe Presentation Recap! April 23, 2013

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On Thursday, April 18, the Philadelphia ASTD E-learning SIG was treated to a fantastic demonstration on Captivate 6 Tips and Tricks by non other than Joe Ganci, AKA Captivate Joe. His fascinating 1-hour webinar provided cool and huge time-saving tips in the popular simulation tool.


Joe was kind enough to provide a job aid as well, and offered to do another webinar later this year (more to come!).


Click here for the job aid!Ganci – Captivate Killer Tips

Captivate 6: Very Cool Tips and Tricks! April 1, 2013

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Program Description:

Ladies and gentlemen, if you use Adobe Captivate, or even if you’re just interested in seeing what it can do, you really want to come see what is possible under the hood. These aren’t just cool, they can be huge time-savers and make you one of the most efficient Captivate developers around. We’re not telling you now what you’re going to learn, just know that at least one, and more likely, several, of these tips will brighten your day and make you happy you attended!

About the Speaker:

Joe Ganci is an eLearning consultant with a long track record. Since 1983, Joe’s design approaches and his expert use of development tools, such as Captivate, Storyline, Raptivity, Presenter and Acrobat, ZebraZapps, Roleplay and others, has helped many to improve their eLearning design and development for both desktop and mobile. Joe’s personal and hands-on style has his services constantly in demand and he is privileged to have visited with many clients all over the world. He has taught classes for many years at client sites and has taught at many learning conferences, where he has often served as keynote speaker.

Joe holds a degree in Computer Science and is a published author, having written several books, research papers and many articles. He is on a mission to improve the quality of eLearning with practical approaches that work.


Webinar – Thursday April 18, 2013 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM EDT

Registration Info:

 Please register for this virtual session using this URL: https://student.gototraining.com/r/9008193562215862528

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the training.

Recap of the Tin Can Presentation by Megan Bowe March 26, 2013

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Megan Bowe, from Rustici Software, gave a tremendous presentation on the
short-comings of SCORM and Learning Management Systems, and how the Tin Can
API can open up an entire world of learning experiences for employees, both
online and offline. Megan discussed how this API captures the activities
and went over which systems are on board and already integrating Tin Can to
securely communicate with a simple vocabulary that captures this stream of
learning activities.

Mobile learning, simulations, virtual worlds, serious games, real-world

activities, experiential learning, social learning, offline learning, and

collaborative learning are just some of the things that can now be

recognized and communicated well with the Tin Can API.

For more information on Tin Can, please click the following link:


ASTD Philly Presentation 03212013

Designing Beyond SCORM: What is the Tin Can API? with Megan Bowe; Thursday March 21, 2013 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM EDT March 12, 2013

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Program Description:

Megan will explain how SCORM has impacted instructional design over time. She will describe Tin Can at a high level, what it is and how it’s being used. She will discuss the new possibilities that Tin Can opens up in designing for learning beyond courseware. There will be examples of ways that Tin Can can help to match learning activities and objectives to real world performance, using some tools that exist today and some that will be built tomorrow.

About the Speaker:

Megan Bowe is a designer and strategist with a history of working with learning-technology startups. Championing data-driven design, Megan works on projects that require a bigger lens to bring learning, portability of data, and formative analysis into focus. Megan currently helps people build strategies and design products with the Tin Can API at Rustici Software, and she co-created Up to All of Us, an un-conference focused on advancing the intersections between learning, design, and technology. You find her blogging at TinCanAPI.com or tweeting @meganbowe

Rustici Software is the leading provider of products and services to assist with Tin Can API and SCORM conformance. Hundreds of LMSs, authoring tools, LRSs and content libraries are powered by Rustici Software technology. Rustici Software researched and drafted the first Tin Can API specification through a BAA from The Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative. They continue to support the development of the spec and strive to help people make the best use of it.

Registration Info:

Please register for this virtual session using this URL: https://student.gototraining.com/r/7914718253254627328

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the training.

Leaving ADDIE for SAM Presenter: Dr. Richard H. Sites, VP Client Services, Allen Interactions February 28, 2013

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ADDIE was a terrific process for instructor-led training. However, now that there are so many training solutions – e-learnings, mobile learning, blended learning – just to name a few, it is more important to create a process based on the solution. Dr. Richard Sites, vice president of client services for Allen Interactions provided great dialogue on this topic, as he presented on the Successive Approximation Model that Allen Interactions developed. The benefits of the model are that it is more efficient, it has effective processes, and superior learning experiences in less time.

Sites discussed the four myths of a “perfect” training:

·        Skillful execution of a process guarantees a quality product

·        Accurate information is the key to an effective learning experience.

·        The environment in which we work does not affect the design of the learning experience we create.

·        Because you went to school, you know what makes a good learning experience.

The important thing is that you cannot uncouple the product from the process – instead, the focus should be on the design principles – making the training meaningful, memorable, and motivational.  To go further, the learning should provide context, a challenge, an activity, and most importantly, meaningful feedback (not just “correct” or “incorrect.”).  

To do this, the SAM method focuses on an iterative instructional design process, and the importance of tightly linking the process with the product (or learning solution). Dr. Sites went into detail about the method, and the high-level steps, in his presentation.  You can see the presentation by clicking the link below:


Mobile Learning is SO 10 Minutes Ago; Mobile Performance is Now! with Rich Mesch; January 17 January 30, 2013

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Rich Mesch presented on an interesting and timely topic this past e-learning SIG meeting – Mobile Performance. He went into the background of “mobile learning” and its short comings and drew a convincing comparisons with the mobile learning and the introduction of movies in the early 1900’s. People tend to relate what they know to a new technology initially, not pushing the boundaries in what the new technology can do. For instance, when movie cameras were first invented and used, directors never moved the cameras from one spot, mainly because cameras recorded plays, and this is what people knew. Not until the movie “The Great Train Robbery,” in 1903, did this change. The director realized that the camera didn’t have to be stationary, and once he moved the camera around during scenes, or showing different angles of the same scene, the film became an instant classic and set trends for future movies. Mobile learning is taking a similar path. The original thinking behind mobile learning was to just take current e-learnings and make them viewable on smart-phones and tablets. But, most people do not use our new mobile technology to learn like this. Dr. Mesch showed that the truly successful way to use mobile technology as learning is to have these devices serve mobile performance support. In other words, provide knowledge or information in small chunks, and in a “just-in-time” format that learners can use as support on-the-job. Dr. Mesch points out that people use mobile devices in short intense bursts; in down-time, such as between appointments; to retrieve information that may not be at their fingertips; and to get information that may be so current or time-sensitive, there’s no other way to get it other than right now. You can click the attachment to view the presentation.

Leaving ADDIE for SAM January 28, 2013

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Dr. Richard H. Sites, VP Client Services, Allen Interactions

Analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation (ADDIE) are all important steps in the design of effective e-learning applications or any learning program. While there have been many adaptations of ADDIE, many of them were made before we had today’s tools, challenges, and opportunities. As is being realized by the software industry with Agile, more radical process changes are now both needed and possible. Meet SAM (Successive Approximation Model). The benefits: More efficient and effective processes and superior learning experiences in less time.

In this in-person session, Dr. Richard Sites addresses the power of an iterative instruction design process, how product and process are tightly linked, and the basic challenges that face the modern day instructional designer. With key insights from his years of experience building and designing technology-based instructional products, Richard discusses key strategies to overcome design and project hurdles through an iterative process.

Richard H. Sites is vice president of client services at Allen Interactions and the co-author of Leaving ADDIE for SAM from ASTD Press. He has spent the past 15 years designing and implementing web-based training and tools to support improved workplace performance. His efforts have been in both academia and private industry, including working with many Fortune 500 companies. He is Vice President of Client Services for Allen Interactions Inc., where he is responsible for promoting value-driven consulting and design throughout all Allen Interactions partnerships. He holds a doctorate of education from the University of West Florida along with a master’s of education and a bachelor’s of business administration.

ASTD PHL – eLearning SIG

Date/Time: Thursday, February 21, 2013 at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM


LaSalle University MetroPlex 
4000 Chemical Road
Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462

For more information, click here:  http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07e6y48m604249b866

Mobile Learning is SO 10 Minutes Ago; Mobile Performance is Now! with Rich Mesch January 7, 2013

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Program Description:
Mobile learning is on everybody’s to-do list, and why not? Who wouldn’t want learning that follows you everywhere? But like so many emerging technologies, we need to look past the gloss of the possible to the reality of the useful. When we deliver learning to a mobile device the same way we deliver it to a desktop computer, we miss the point of having a mobile device to begin with.

People “learn” from their mobile devices all the time, they just don’t call it training. Whether they’re pulling sports scores, GPS-ing the next leg of their trip, or sending some quick texts, people use their mobile devices to gain knowledge–and we need to leverage the methods our audience is already using. They use mobile devices:

•         In short intense bursts
•         In down-time, such as between appointments
•         To retrieve information that may not be at their fingertips, or
•         To get information that may be so current or time-sensitive, there’s no other way to get it other than right now.

We need to look at not what we can teach people on a mobile device, but rather how we can use mobile devices to provide information to help them perform better. The goal of this session is to overcome the hype and misinformation surrounding mobile learning, and focus on how this technology can help the workforce become more effective. We’ll explore why most mobile learning is ineffective, and why mobile content needs to be rethought based on how people use mobile devices.

About the Speaker:Rich Mesch

Rich Mesch has been working in the field of experiential and contextualized learning for 25 years. He has designed and implemented solutions for dozens of Fortune 1000 companies in all industries. His projects have won several awards, including multiple Brandon Hall Excellence Awards, the New Media Invision Award for Simulation, the New York Festivals Silver Medal, and the HR Executive Top 10 Products.

He is a frequent conference presenter, having spoken on experiential and contextualized learning at the ASTD International Conference, ASTD TechKnowledge, TechLearn, eLearning Guild Learning Solutions, SPBT, Interactive Learning Conference, and the Linkages Conference on Leadership. He has published articles in Training Magazine, Focus Magazine, and Technology for Learning Newsletter. He is currently the Senior Director, Strategy & Innovation for Performance Development Group in Malvern, PA.


To sign up for the event, click here: http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07e6kjr9yh4fb71eca