Is SCORM dead?
Do SCORM courses still make a valued contribution to workplace learning strategies?
SCORM-based eLearning content continues to dominate the course catalogues on many an organisation’s LMS platform. Is this simply due to an unwillingness to let go of what at some time in the past represented a considerable investment, or is this because such content continues to play a valued role in organisational learning today?
In some learning circles ‘SCORM’ is a dirty word. We would argue that such a view apportions blame to the wrong cause – it is akin to blaming the chicken that laid the egg for a bad omelette. SCORM itself is not to primarily blame for much of the failures of our digital learning endeavours; rather it is the learning architects and producers who failed to deliver a true learning experience.
Through the many, many people years of work and experience with digital learning programmes and projects we have learnt much about what works and what does not work in the field of human and organisational learning. There is very little rocket science behind the headline messages and they are perfectly captured in the 70/20/10 learning model developed by the Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL) and that has gained much momentum and support in recent years. The message is simple ‘we, that is humans, learn best through personal experience and endeavour when supported by trusted experts and some foundational knowledge of the subject area’. In this model SCORM plays to the 10 which is about structured learning. Advocates of 70/20/10 advise us not to get hung up by the absolute numbers but more to note the relative proportions and recognise that structured learning, whether it be in the classroom or through digital (e.g. SCORM) courses, should only ever play a relatively minor role in the fullness of an effective learning strategy.
So, in our minds, used in the right way, SCORM, alongside other structured learning models, should and will have an important role to play in organisational learning for years to come.
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