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Subject: Groups - DITA Learning Content SC Meeting modified

DITA Learning Content SC Meeting has been modified by John Hunt

Date:  Thursday, 14 September 2006
Time:  11:00am - 12:00pm ET

Event Description:
USA Toll Free Number: 866-880-0098
USA Toll Number: +1-210-795-1100
PASSCODE: 6396088
Go to http://www.mymeetings.com/audioconferencing/globalAccessFAQ.php for information on specific country access dialing.

1) Roll-call, welcome, and introduction of new members or observers
a) update on new member contacts

2) Review of top-level goal
"Develop a general top-level design for structured, intent-based authoring of learning content with good learning architecture, following DITA principles and best practices."

3) Status on Task 1: "Review of structured designs for learning and how to apply DITA principles and best practices."

4) JoAnn Hackos to lead a discussion about the 
CISCO Systems Reusable Object Strategy white paper.

This is a seminal statement on reusable learning objects from CISCO. It identifies five core content types - Concept, Fact, Procedure, Process, Principle - and combines them with Overview, Summary, Practice, Assessment as the basis for an RLO - reusable learning object.


5) Planning next week's agenda - are we ready to tackle SCORM?

6) Adjourn

Minutes 14 September 2006

1. Roll call
(see track attendance link)

Bruce Esrig is acting Secretary today. 

Welcome to guests from Lucent:
Karen Ziech, Performance Technologist
Brenda Hiler, Training and Multimedia Specialist
Fred Elsner, Training Manager

2. Review of top-level goal

3. Status of task 1: review of Cisco white papers and other information on reusuable learning objects strategy.

4. Dr. JoAnn Hackos led out review and discussion of the Cisco Reusable Learning Objects

Originally a project of internal sales training organization. To build materials for the sales force. Mix and match.

Basis for approach:
 - research by David Merrill (Arizona State) on instructional design and components
 - implementation by Ruth Clark, book Developing Technical Training (5 information types)

Updates (2003) to be provided later:
 - How to implement
 - Reusable learning strategy, v5.0

Make sure information developers understand.

An RLO is a component of a course (first roster, see also more complete roster below):
 - learning objective
 - content
 - summary
 - practice activity
 - assessment

RLOs are reusable. They can be combined in a variety of ways to produce end-product courses.

RLO lesson. Composed of RIOs.
Course -> Module -> Lesson (RLO) > Topic (RIO) [ -> Sub-topic ]

Topic may be of type Concept, Fact, Principle, Procedure, Process.

 - Concept (DITA concept) is defined by a single word or term. (What is a ?) Has examples, non-examples, explains an idea.
 - Fact (DITA reference) is specific information, data, pictures of objects. Ex: the number of slots, the setup script, the 

footprint size.
 - Procedure (DITA task). Sequence of steps.
 - Process (use DITA concept or reference) is a description of how something works, a flow of events, not necessarily done by 

a single person. Ex: Designing the campus network.
 - Principle (use DITA concept or reference) is a set of guidelines for action. Usually require judgement. Does the outcome 

depend on the circumstances?

Swope: Sometimes wonder whether its reference info. How does the user use the information? Need to look at the information 

before they perform the task. If it is conceptual, its Concept. If theyre just looking at it quickly, its Reference.

Hackos: Verifying this from observations of authors. Use of process and principle is not consistent. May be better off with 

just three types. Many authors use just three types anyway.

Updated version contains clearer type separation than distributed version.

RLO = lesson:
 - overview
 - lesson objectives  used to create the assessment
 - RIOs (any number)
 - summary
 - practice
 - assessment

 - What level do objectives appear at?
 - An offer to put together a structure cross-mapping.

Hackos: In practice, sales people ended up taking just the lessons they needed. A finer granularity of information worked 


Paul Barley: A good match for busy people.

Hackos: SAP would sell the entire training base to their customers. Then the customer puts together what they think is a 

course. They propose it to SAP. Turns out to ignore prerequisites. SAP customers werent getting enough information to build 

a coherent course.

So SAP came to Arbortext User Group. They were defining prerequsites for a module.

Also, needed multiple instructors in order to match range of information requests.

Hunt: how to capture what context is needed in order to construct sensible training. Although the RIOs stand alone, there are 

relationships that must be acknowledged.

Bob Bernard: Metadata to capture this? A context to use the topic in.

Swope: Prerequisites. At the task level.

Paul Barley: Looking at the topics  provide way to tie them to the objective, as an alternative to an organizing structure.

Bob Bernard/Paul Barley: Do we want to impose a structure? Under what circumstances?

Esrig: DITA 1.1  element could link from the topic to the objective that it supports.

Baril: Define relationships in the DITA map. Could state which ones are mandatory. For certification, its necessary. But for 

your work, it could be optional. The navigation could be adjusted in relation to the audience.

Hackos: RIOs dont in themselves point to any particular learning objective. Its the other way around. The learning 

objectives are defined to encapsulate a collection of tasks, and data about the tasks, and concepts that need to be 

understood. The topics themselves stand independently of the learning objective.

Hackos: The objection from instructional designers.

The concept isnt positioned correctly for this environment. If it was developed elsewhere, it cant be used in the training 


Baril: Then the trainer needs to sit with the information developer!

Hackos: The conceptual information developed by documentation couldnt be reused by training because the point of view was 

different. What was the issue?

Doc conceded that the conceptual information ** needed ** to be informed by the perspective of the instructors: Why do 

people need to know this? Rather than carrying over information from investigation. Can be vague or irrelevant.

Swope: Relates to users access to information. Break it into topics in order to identify what information is needed. Can 

find out what types of information are needed for the student to be successful. Sometimes the concept may contain information 

that the student does not require.

Paul Barley: Can find holes more easily if breaking it down to the topic level.

Swope: Does the structure / style depend on the type of courseware?

Baril: In instructor-led classes, the context is too long (if the topic-oriented style is used). Be aware when separating 

that youll have some additional detail that could be omitted if the content assumed that the information is being presented 

in order. Not really an issue for the instructors  they would skip ahead to the core of the information (the steps).

Sometimes the tasks flow one into another even if they are presented in separate topics.

Paul Barley: Online experience must compensate for the lack of an instructor.

Hackos: Must capture the transition that the instructor does orally as text.
Baril: Trying out a condition. Tutorial=yes/no. Can omit some of the transitional information.

E-mail from JoAnn Hackos:
 - 3 articles from 2003
 - plus 1999 article on RIOs

5) Planning next week's agenda - 
- Paul Barley to put together a map of terms and concepts, to help pull together some of the information we've shared so far
- Follow-up discussion on the more recent Cisco updates and issues raised this week, particularly about how to define 

learning context and what it means relative to audience, task analysis, job roles
- Introduce and plan our discussion of how all this relates to the SCORM standard

ACTION: JoAnn - may be able to bring in Microsoft contact to discuss their model. JoAnn to contact potential guests.
ACTION: John - follow through on contact with Judy Brown and other potential guest experts on SCORM
ACTION: All - initiate and contribute to SC email discussions

6) meeting adjourned 12:00 noon ET.

This event is one in a list of recurring events.
Other event dates in this series:

Thursday, 31 August 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 07 September 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 21 September 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 28 September 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 05 October 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 12 October 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 19 October 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 26 October 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 02 November 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 09 November 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 16 November 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 23 November 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 30 November 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 07 December 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 14 December 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET
Thursday, 21 December 2006, 11:00am to 12:00pm ET

View event details:

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PRODID:-//Kavi Corporation//NONSGML Kavi Groups//EN
X-WR-CALNAME:My Calendar
SUMMARY:DITA Learning Content SC Meeting
DESCRIPTION:USA Toll Free Number: 866-880-0098\nUSA Toll Number:
  +1-210-795-1100\nPASSCODE: 6396088\nGo to
  http://www.mymeetings.com/audioconferencing/globalAccessFAQ.php for
  information on specific country access dialing.\n\nGroup: DITA
  Learning and Training Content Specialization SC\nCreator: John Hunt

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