Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Free awareness games and how IBM embeds informal learning and training

The strength of IBM's training department is of course in its people, and the European eLearning group is lead by Bert De Coutere who has an eye for new learning potential and strategies. He is by no doubt a top competent training/eLearning visionary. He also wrote a book on competencies, which is definitely worth a read.

I recently had the pleasure of encountering Bert when he was presenting informal and game-based learning solutions from IBM. The great thing about Bert is, that you know you will learn something out of his presentation.

For those interested in immersive learning at IBM, check out these games, a soon to come and a well-known business game. For those intested in informal learning, scroll immediately down to the informal part. But first games:

CityOne: A Smarter Planet game (a FREE game)
Cityone is also an awareness game, which will be launched at 4th October 2010: energy, banking, ... choose which solutions you want to propose to make people happy. Think you know what it takes to make the energy systems that serve a city more efficient? Given the opportunity, could you make the city’s water cleaner and more plentiful, its banks more robust and customer-centric and its retail stores more innovative?
So, be sure to check your tweets on the 4th October 2010! In the meanwhile, have a look at the trailer:

Innov8 was a previous awareness game from IBM
(a free game)
IBM has made awareness games like Innov8 for some years. Innov8 is a serious game, used in e.g. Barcelona for business remodeling. The aim of the game is to understand what an organization really needs.
Awareness: people appreciated the link to reality. Innov8 has an introduction game with a guided mission. The game can be played online and is for free.

Bert also showed a game which was developed with the latest commercial gaming software's:
Diversity@play, this is a quickgame that was released for diversity awareness and behavior change.

Social learning - informal learning
What makes IBM interesting as a business, is that they invest in learning, they also try-out new educational insights. For example they promote training by choosing and highlight 'learning of the month' (easy and motivational, I am going to embed this in my institute).

Informal learning: within IBM staff is motivated to build a course that covers a couple of weeks and has multiple actions that are chosen by the learner, but where others can add activities too. For example if someone builds a new tool or starts to use it, they can build an informal course on it, and then offer this to the complete staff, this way those who could benefit from using this new tool can immediately start to learn about it.
How is this new? You might wonder. Well, the new hook is, that within IBM you can also get a 'training ribbon' after having taken this informal course build by colleagues. This way you can get some kind of certification AND it can become a hot topic inside the company or institute to take similar courses. Not sure if the builder of the course gets something out of it, but at least promotional options broaden.

This is Bert's presentation in Slideshare covering the above topics