Communication

Standard – Communicate clearly to achieve professional goals using visual and verbal modes to explain and persuade.

Context

The communications standard requires the demonstration of the ability to communicate clearly to achieve professional goals using visual and verbal modes to explain and persuade. EDTEC 671 with Dr. Hoffman provided me the opportunity to demonstrate this standard through the informal learning assignment. For this assignment I created an audio tour for people visiting the Cambodian UNESCO World Heritage site of The Bayon which required clear visual and verbal communication to be successful.

Outcomes

According to Dr. Hoffman, the main outcome from this project was to, “better understand what and how people learn in informal learning settings and how you as an educational technologist can help promote that learning.”

For tourists participating in the audio tour the outcomes were: increasing knowledge of Khmer history, increasing appreciation of Khmer architecture, and increasing knowledge of the preservation efforts.

Demonstrating Communication

Since effective verbal communication is vital to the success of the audio tour, careful thought was given to match the audio content with the learning objectives. As a result there were 22 listening points (podcasts) created along the audio tour that focused the primary learning outcomes.

In addition to creating listening stations to effective communicate information, when choosing the audio delivery system itself there were several variables that needed to be taken into consideration to maximize effective communication:

  1. The Bayon is a UNESCO World Heritage Site so there can be no physical modifications to the temples themselves.
  2. The climate in Cambodia is tropical so the technology must be able to withstand extremes of temperature and humidity.
  3. The site is difficult to secure so there is the possibility of theft of devices.
  4. Users are from a variety of nations and ages so the technology must be simple to operate.
  5. There are many visitors so battery life must be ample.

Finally, effective visual communication was demonstrated by the final presentation which was created in Macromedia Captivate. The purpose of this presentation was to communicate effectively to my classmates the needs assessment, the design plan, and the deliverable for the audio tour of The Bayon.

Lessons Learned

Informal learning situations need to blend education and entertainment in order to keep the target audience engaged.

In informal learning situations the audiences are incredibly diverse, as a result compromises need to be made regarding the quantity and depth of content presented in order to reach the majority of “learners” in a meaningful way.

Communication through the use of podcasts provides an efficient method for delivering short yet meaningful messages in informal learning situations which will help keep the learners engaged.

Communicating in informal learning situations will be most effective when the learning environment is logically organized and executed.

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