March 2019

Learning should be fun

The article I read is “9 eLearning Trends For 2018” by Suresh Kumar. The author has worked in the eLearning industry for 14 years and tells us his prediction of the learning trends. In the article, he mentioned the following hot learning trends: VR/AR, Intelligent Assistants, Gamification, and Game-Based Learning, Adaptive or Personalized Learning, Microlearning, Content Curation, Interactive Video-Based Learning.

As a big fan of self-learning, I’m very interested in some techniques. For example, Game-Based Learning is my favorite. Educators gamifying their courses and help students learn skills by having fun. At Virginia Tech, I was very lucky to have a game-based learning experience in Communicating Science classes. In each class, we play games to improve our communication skills. For example, we practiced telling our research using a song and tried to use as many body languages as possible. I felt so happy and excited after classes. That course changed my personality in some way. I became more out-going and willing to talk with others. Besides, I fall in love with public speaking. That must be the power of playing games.

I have explored many interesting eLearning apps outside of the higher education system. For instance, there is an app called SuperBetter, which helps people achieve personal growth and tackle real-life challenges. Its idea was introduced by an inspiring TED talk by Jane McGonigal. Since English is my second language, I’m using an app called ELSA based on artificial intelligence technology to talk with a language speech assistant and enjoy our conversations. If you are interested in big data and machine learning,  you may consider the online courses on Datacamp, which is a good example of Microlearning. Their courses consist of short videos (2~5 mins) and interactive hands-on practices. Although learning programming can be very difficult, Datacamp’s classes are interesting and easy to follow.

I believe learning should be fun, we just need to figure out the most interesting way to do it.

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