Learner Experience Design Using the AGES Model with Joe Pulichino

We talk about learner experience design, but do we really know how to do it? Our aim is to make the experience more engaging, more efficient, and more effective. Questions about whether there are general principles to guide us or an architectural line to follow that will shape our vision for the learner pose challenges to many instructional designers. Yet, it’s possible they can be answered in part by using the AGES model for learner experience design.This session will explore the application of the AGES model, which was developed through the collaboration of research scientists, through an exploration of AGES principles, best practices, and case studies. You’ll learn how to design optimal learner experiences by using the four variables of the AGES model: attention, generation, emotion, and spacing, exploring how each variable contributes to designing and developing more engaging, efficient, and effective learning experiences. We’ll look for new meaning in the age-old practical wisdom that informs every AGES practice—and take a quick tour of the modern science that helps explain the efficacy of the AGES model. We’ll also delve into the role of visual and auditory design in supporting and enhancing application of AGES principles and consider case studies that demonstrate the powerful ways the AGES design model can be used for traditional asynchronous eLearning, as well as live and virtual classroom style instruction. Learn how AGES design practices can contribute to program sustainability and asset re-usability. In short, if you are interested in designing and developing optimal learner experiences, you’ll find this session stimulating and inspiring.

Luis Malbas  
Welcome back, everybody. Thanks again so much for joining us. Let's see, I'm just checking to look in the in the chat area to see who is come popping in. Yep, there's Bobby. And I say LAN, Susan is hair. Paloma. Excellent. All right, Deborah is back. Alright, great. Everybody. I'm so glad to be able to introduce you to Joe pull Aquino, who? Joe, you've been? I know you at least like spoken one type of session. You had a conversation with us on CLDC. But a couple of sessions a couple sessions. Yeah. And, and it's crazy, but you are like one of my first l&d people that I kind of got to know. Because we worked together at the guild when the guild was pretty much a startup still. Absolutely, everyone. Yeah, a lot of you may not know this, but But Joe was the the first director of research for for the eLearning Guild now called the learning guild. And so I'm not sure when this was this was probably around 2005 2006. I don't know somewhere around there. Yeah. So. So yeah. And it's been a while I don't think I think the last time that I saw you Joe was at Sweetwater in Mill Valley. Who was Colin Hay, I think it was a show with Colin Hay. And just to catch you at a bar.

Joe Pulichino  
That's right. Oh, I forgot about all that. Yeah, so I, I saw you at DevLearn this past year. Okay. In October, I have the corner of my eye during the exhibitor cocktail party. And I said, Okay, go find it. And then I lost you. And that was that. So

Luis Malbas  
nice. Nice. Okay. Yeah. And see Kim Kim, remember, see, Kim remembers you being at the guild. So this is great. And so I'm really glad that you've been active in the community and that you're participating. I really appreciate that. So everybody, just so you know, I'm going to tell you a little bit more about Joe. It's the principal consultant at Athena learning solutions. Joe has been a leader in l&d for over 40 years. And his expertise covers compliance and ethics, leadership development, sales and technical training, Human Capital and Talent Management and training, assessment and evaluation. Joe is an incredible resource, please make sure you connect with him on LinkedIn, if you aren't already. Let's see what else we got. Here. You are the author of the LinkedIn learning courses brain based elearning design and Instructional Design Essentials. Yes, those are popular and the soon to be released leadership skills for l&d professionals. Yes, informally the research director of The Guild, Joe has published widely in business and academic journals, and has presented his research at many industry conferences. I know the last time you're here, you're representing T Mobile. Yes. And you did a fantastic session there. And today, you're gonna be talking about learning experience design using the ages model. This is something that you presented at DevLearn. So I'm really grateful that you're sharing that with the TBC. community today. And so with that, I'm going to go and hide myself from the screen and let you take it away. Great.

Joe Pulichino  
Thank you, Louis. Thanks very much. Thanks for inviting me here. And thanks to everyone out there, who showed up to to attend this session. I'm really excited. This is a reprise and updated version of the session I just did at DevLearn. A couple of weeks ago, I was I mentioned, where I saw Louis and the cocktail party. And it, you know, had such a good reception to it that I decided I wanted to work on it a little bit more. And you know, it really sort of polished the scripts a bit. And so this is the first time I'm trotting it out again. And so I really look forward to your feedback. We're going to make this an interactive session, because that's kind of what the topic is. Yeah, DevLearn and the guild, you know, I was how do we get a show of hands here is just to ask for a thumbs up. I'm just wondering, has anyone was anyone at DevLearn? How do we we see the thumbs ups coming? Oh, yeah, there they are. Okay, cool. Yeah, there's a few people that were, you know, I was at the very first DevLearn. And I say this because it's amazing. It's like a little bit of a barometer of how our industry has grown. I mean, there was like, six exhibitors at the first DevLearn. It wasn't even called DevLearn. Then it was in San Francisco. It's in some hotel. And you know, there was 30 or 40 attendees and six exhibitors. And you know, when I went this year, I hadn't been in a while. It was just mind blowing, how many people were there and how many sessions and the exhibit hall was just stacked and filled with? It was called elearning. Producer, right? That's right. So anyway, you know, we've come a long way. And by way of introduction here to me, this is let's see, how do I do this? As the slides it was working before. Oh, I know I gotta put my cursor over here. Yeah, there we go. So yeah, this is the presentation. And you know, by way of context and add to my, my bio here, I started as an English teacher at Rutgers University, the State University of New Jersey. I was a graduate student there. And you know, I was one of those guys who graduate students who had to teach the Freshman Composition course. And, you know, I bring this up, because we're going to talk a little bit about teaching in a classroom and teaching virtually, that's what this whole presentation is about. And, you know, at that time, I'm going to date myself now really date myself. My technology was a blackboard, not a whiteboard on Blackboard, and white chalk, we even have colored chalk and of course, an eraser. And if in that was my tool in the classroom. And if I wanted to give my students a handout, we call them handouts, I used to have to put a sheet of mimeograph paper into an IBM Selectric typewriter, which is one of those types where you could you'd have the little ball where you could change the font from Helvetica at Times Roman. And then you type into there, if you made a mistake, you just had to exit out there was no delete or anything like that, of course, and then you put it in the mimeograph machine, and it would print out, you know, with this, that blue ink that that used, and then you'd hand that out to the students. And that was it. That was my instructional design tool. So we've come a long way. And you know, and I bring that up, because, on one hand, you know, learning hasn't changed any, certainly not in the last 30 years. But our tools for providing learning experience, and our tools for designing instructional materials has certainly changed. And so that's going to be kind of what I'll talk a bit to you about today is how we're using this age as model to design for Learner Experience. And it's a sort of a case study and in how I did that, and one really very interesting project. That's this subject here. And I know that you may not have to do a project specifically like this was just transforming. Talking about transformation from this morning session. This is the transformation of a face to face instructor led workshop in a classroom to a virtual online version of the same material. And that's what we're gonna be talking about. So enough about me, I'd like to know a little bit more about you. Who are you? I'm assuming that many of you are instructional designer. So could you give me a thumbs up flasher? If, if you're an instructional designer? As was a few of you, okay, great. How many people are here altogether? Louis? This, so I know. And then some of you might have the job title learner exploiting Learner Experience Designer, because it's sort of now there's, you know, there's a migration from instructional design to Learner Experience Design, I want to talk a little bit about that, as some of you might have, like, feel that you do both. And the other question I would have is, okay, elearning, developer Learning Program Manager, great. Director of learning experience. Okay, so some managers and leaders in here. Great. That's, that's fantastic. And, oh, I see Susan there. Susan, I think we go back to PG and E days, right? I remember you. And then how many of your teachers or were former teachers, or, you know, to actually teach in a classroom, you know, because this is going to be about that tension between design and actual facilitation, if we want to call it that. Okay. All right. So so there's the audience. And what I want to do now is because I just gotten you to think about yourselves a little bit from who you are now, as designers of, of instructional materials or designers of learning experience. Now I want you to do is think about yourselves as learners. So what I'm going to ask you to do is, I want you to think about a session that you attended, it could be one of the sessions this morning, or one of your DevLearn sessions, if you were at DevLearn, or any course or class that you've been in recently, particularly one that was either instructor led, and I want you to reflect on four items here. Okay, so the first one is, how would you characterize the quality of your attention during that session? Was it was it you know, you know, how, what was, you know, were you really paying attention Are you hard on to attention? Or were you? Were you distracted a lot? And if so, what? What was it that caused you to maintain focus? Or what was it that distracted you? Okay, that's the first thing to reflect on. And second thing is did the session bring to mind any prior knowledge you had about the topic? In other words, did you already know something about it? And as you went through the session, you are sort of referring back to what you already knew. And in the process of going through the materials going through the experience, did you consider how you might apply what you were learning to future endeavors? You apply it some way? Okay, third, reflection. Any emotions or feelings that you experienced? What emotions or feelings did you experience during the session? What caused this arousal? I noticed in this morning session, that it was kind of inspirational and people noted that they were inspired by what they heard, they had an emotional reaction to what was what was very. Okay. So then finally, final reflection, is what plans did you make either during the session or immediately after to refresh or review what you learned in the weeks ahead? And to what extent did you think that it was going to be necessary to do that to make the learning stick?

Okay. So there's four reflections. Okay, and, and your reflections here. So one of my, one of my one of my premises here is that your reflections here, and what you wrote down, hopefully, you wrote something down, you may have just thought about it is actually more important to your learning experience. And anything I'm going to say to you today, anything I'm going to present, and this is one of the principles that I wanted to sort of cover at the outset. So I'm gonna ask you to do do something here just to create a little bit of positive social pressure. And to reinforce the reflection just had, pick any one of the four, and write a very brief chat in the in the chat that you want to share with your fellow learners here. And this, this supports your reinforcement, and it actually contributes to their social learning. So just something quick, like saying, I was distracted by my email, or, Yes, I remembered what I learned about transformation and another course, or Yeah, I was really inspired by this session, or just this session really made me happy, you know, or, yeah, I made a plan or the instructor gave us a plan for how we were going to continue to reinforce our knowledge in the months ahead. So go ahead and just type something in. And you know, I don't know, again, it could good, thank you both for starting us off. Linlin I wish it were more time for reflection number four afternoon event. Yeah, that's often a one, as you'll see here in this presentation, and the experience, I'm going to try to provide you really critical thing that's often the most overlooked aspect of ages. Yeah, I was just distracted because I didn't Okay, perspective, that was important to me. Ah, okay, I couldn't connect. Very interesting. Okay. So there we go, there's a few, I'm gonna move ahead and move along. Now, we've gotten three down there just gives you a little bit of an example of how what I'm trying to do here is not just give you information, but get your own wheels turning about this topic, and about what you're going to be experiencing today. And what you're going to notice is that this is about the ages model. And what I did was I gave you an experience of ages, from a learning standard standpoint, before I gave you any instruction, or any content presentation about ages, at all. So that's part of the lesson. All right, let's move on. Learner Experience Design. Okay, so we all know that engaging learners is one of the hardest things we have to do. And we all know that designing for instruction. In other words, building instructional materials isn't always what engages learners. What we want to do and what I think we've been done a service by those folks out there who have really been promoting and pushing this concept of learning experience design has really helped us think more about putting the learner at the center. So for example, what you just saw in one of the in the text there is that, that the the the instructor wasn't really accommodating the perspective of the learner, and that was sort of distracting. So what we did get ahead of myself here, so you know, just a quick briefing on learner experience design. It helps us focus on learner motivation, perspective and preference. It helps leverage it asks To leverage emerging delivery technology, it forces us to be in close collaboration and teamwork with semis and other experts. And finally, it asks us to evaluate results to really be data driven about our design efforts. So those are some sort of general principles that I'm sure you're all familiar with. I have a slide I want to show you now that helps depict what I'm trying to distinguish between instruction, and experience. So among my many adventures in life, I was a high school teacher in China, not not too many years ago, actually, long after I was an instructor at Rutgers teaching English. And this is a picture of my class on the first day of class. And what I want you to think about is, this environment, you can see very clearly was designed for instruction. You're right, I'm at the Senate at the front of the classroom, I'm going to speak to the students I'm going to like put stuff from my head into their head, and they're going to look at their books and write things down. And they're all in their own desk space. Okay, that's designed for instruction, that environment. Now what I did like a week later, was I changed the classroom environment, so that it was designed for experience, you see the difference? There at tables with fellow students, they're focused on their work, not on what I'm saying. And you know, the Blackboard or the green board in this case is just sort of a peripheral to what's actually going on. So this is kind of what I'm aiming at, in how I think about designing for instruction versus designing for experience. Okay, let's get into the heart of this year, I'm going to take a drink of water in many ways, and this, I think, came up in the morning session about transformation to is that this is, what I'm going to present today is a little bit about unlearning. That isn't and this is my story of unlearning. So sometimes to move forward into new territory, you're blocked by your own what you've already learned. And in order to achieve the results that we achieved in this project, of transition, transforming a face to face instructor led event to a virtual online instructor led event, we had to unlearn some things. And my unlearning started in the park in Amsterdam, where if you've ever been to Amsterdam, you know how important bicycles are, while I was there at a workshop about brain friendly Information Management, and in in learning, and they, they, they brought us to the park and they gave us a bicycle. And this bicycle had been engineered so that when you turn the steel to the left the handlebars to the left, the bar bike went to the right. And when you turned it to the right, it went to the left. And I don't know if any of you have ever seen this exercise before actually experienced it. But it sounds like it would be pretty easy to do. Okay, I'll just adjust and my thinking and, and, of course, none. Nobody in the workshop could go more than six inches without falling off the bike or coming off balance. Because you're so hard wired, that when you turn left, you go left and turn right, we looked at it, you just couldn't unlearn this in the moment. And it just showed the difficulty we have in coming, you know, you're unlearning things that keep us from innovating and transforming, which is what we had to do in this project. You know, from there, I went to Pepperdine, I got my doctorate. I learned a lot about learning theory. After practicing as a learning and development professional for almost 20 years. And I started to learn things like constructivism, and in what it meant to, to encourage the learners to construct their own meaning from what was being taught. And, and I hooked up with these guys who did the seminar, and they had a project with a high tech company in Silicon Valley that required to make a significant transformation of a training product that they had been selling and delivering to this company for some time. And what I brought to the table was this concept of ages which I had learned from the neuro Leadership Institute. So if you want to know what this ages things is, it was just it was brought to the market brought to our awareness to our industry through a series of articles by the NeuroLeadership Institute. You can go Google them and read all about it. And it basically is about how these ages variables are important because they're the levers of on how well the learning sticks how well the learning happens. And it's all based on, you know, advances, recent advances in neuroscience. And again, you can Google these articles, these articles were the basis of the work that I did the theoretical constructs that I brought to this project that I'm going to talk about, gave the gods key, right.

So the agent, so what are the ages variables, you will, you've already experienced them in the initial exercise I gave you to do, which is attention, generation, emotion, and spacing. And when these variables are optimized by design, okay, in the learning experience, they provide ideal conditions or more ideal conditions for learning to happen. Now, here's the thing that's really interesting, when I first did my, my this work, when I first did my course, the focus was a lot on the science. And there's a lot of noise about the science of learning and, and what's a hoax, and what's real science and et cetera, et cetera. And when it came to realize, which I think you'll realize in the course of this, if you haven't already, is that you don't even need to know the science to know that the more we pay attention to something, the more we'll remember it, the more we can generate our own connections to things, the more will it will stick with us, the more it will enhance our learning, the more that we have an emotional reaction to something, the more we learn what we remember what we've learned, and the more that that learning gets spaced out and repeated over time, the more it will stick. And we all know this, from our experience, if you if you think about your when you're in elementary school, or in high school or in college, you know that paying attention and generating your own meaning and having an emotional reaction spacing was was absolutely, that if those were present, if those variables were optimized, you had a better learning experience, you're more likely to learn things. So that's those are the ages variables. So what did we do? So here we get into the nitty gritty of this program? Okay, got 2226, Pepsi are good. So the problem was, there was an instructor led face to face workshop, it was, it was called Business brain training. It was about how to manage information overload, and how to thrive in the knowledge economy. That was the sort of the pitch, right how to how to do better at all the information that was coming at you all the emails or all that. And it was a two full day session, it was two, eight hour days, you know, eight to five or something like that with a break for lunch. But the problem was, there was limited capacity, because there was only, you know, so many instructors, there was no, there was only so many classrooms, you had to fly people in from all over the world. You know, it's expensive. And it wasn't an ideal situation for scaling this training to a broader audience, which is what the company wanted to do. They wanted more and more people to be more skilled knowledge workers. The skills that were being taught in the session, by the way, were mind mapping, speed reading, and various memory techniques. And those were the skills that you learned in order to better manage information overload and thrive in the knowledge economy. Well, what was the solution, they decided, well, the solution would be a virtual instructor led event. So now people could just stay in their office or their their home and dial in. And they wouldn't have to travel, we wouldn't have to worry about classrooms, we could have maybe even more students in the class, it was to take place over three half days, a 12 hour session, it would increase the enrollments there would be no traveling. So that was the challenge. And this company brings studio nationals running this brought me in my team Athena and I, to see what we could do to fix this. So you're just to context here was the worst and workshop objectives, strengthen knowledge worker competencies, we're going to teach strategic thinking, we were going to improve planning and organizing, we were going to help with problem solving, we were going to do look for results oriented performance. So these are all active things. And what we're going to do is, is use the skills of mind mapping, speed reading and memory techniques to get better each of these four things. And you can see already, this was an actual slide from the course. And you can see if you're familiar with mind mapping, that the presentation right at the beginning was actually starting to get students start to visualize things from a mind mapping perspective. So desired learning outcomes, we wanted people to be more productive. We wanted them to be more creative. We wanted them to be less stressed, and we wanted them to be more feel more richly rewarded in what they were doing every day. Okay. So that's the context. The challenge Well, when we looked at the content, you probably do the math from before, we were going from 16 hours to 12 hours, for less hours to do the work to do to do the training. So there was that problem engagement, how are we going to get people engaged, that the way you could in a workshop, you know, go, everyone go to the blackboard, everyone go to the white paper, let's mix it up and sit at different tables, all these things you had available to you were not available in the virtual online environment, and how they were going to transfer what they were learning when they went back to the office. And what we found was, as we investigated this was, we were like, the dog, the dogs that didn't eat their own dog food, okay, we were the brain focused company. And yet, even in the design of the instructor led face to face workshop, we really weren't taking advantage of the key brain principle grant brain neuroscience principles that you see in the ages model, the ages variables to design the initial program in the first place. And so what we had was way too much instructional content way too much like stuff to give out to people, there was a very low engagement threshold, in terms of the exercises that we were providing people, there was just not enough activities. That was why. And there was very limited attempts to transfer what people were learning to their actual lived environment when they left the workshop. So neuroscience to the rescue. This is where the the agent stuff came in, and the articles from the neuro Leadership Institute. So it was started stuff like this that we started to bring to the table. Okay, you can read this here. Basically, telling you that there's things that you can do to activate people's brains that help people recall what they learned, there's real science behind it. And as I said, it's science that actually supports your actual experience of learning. And this relates to dopamine, and neurotransmitters like this. So there's, there's an element of, hey, we could do a better job of stimulating the way that people's brains naturally work. By doing the things that we know from experience, actually help people learn, and bringing those into the design of the program. Here's, you know, with the release of dopamine activates the hippocampus, as if it is being told pay attention and remember this, we'll see how that works out and some of the exercises that we did. So this is how we use the four variables. And we added a fifth variable, which is repetition, because it's not just spacing, the learning out. It's recursive and iterative and repetition that helps us learn. Okay, learning process, I'm going to skip through this. But it's really well go through very quickly. Our learning process, we're asking questions, first, giving people context in situations where they would apply what they learn, have them do activate activities and exercises to reinforce that, have them collaborate, work together, and then build a community or team around what they were doing. Okay. What we did at the beginning was we said, you know, what, we got to really capture people in the first 20 minutes of his virtual online experience. And we wanted to do that, by establishing certainty. When some of you thought before about what distracted you from paying close attention. What we learned was, you might have you might some of you might have said that you know what, I wasn't really sure where this was going. I wasn't sure you know, when it was going to end, I wasn't sure what was going to happen next. And you you got distracted by by being lost in the session. And so what we realized that we needed to do was establish certainty. We needed to establish in people's minds what was going to happen over the for the three half days, step by step so that they didn't get lost in the process. So we had them. Secondly, work through all of the prompts. We showed them how we were going to use the icons, emojis, how we were going to use voice, however, we're going to use chat, how are we going to use the tools and made sure that we we gave them some practice with all of them. So that didn't become a distraction. We counsel them on no multitasking. And we talked about how we were going to do a multitasking text tasking exercise, which I'm going to do with you guys in a few minutes. That will bring home the point that you're not here to waste your time you're here to pay attention and focus on this and that's how the learning is going to happen. We show them what our learning process was going to be, there's going to be some lecture, there's going to be some reading, you're going to watch some videos, there's going to be music to listen to, you're going to do mind maps, there's going to be quizzes and asking questions, sessions, and there's gonna be homework.

We told them, and this was a benefit that we had was that in order for them to get the course certificate, which got reported back to their managers, they had to do three things. And so we said, look, we cannot validate your certificate unless you do these three things. And we're going to help you along the way to make sure you get them done. We gave them here's the daily schedule, here's what we're going to do Monday for the three days. And so you know, what's coming and when it's coming. And finally, we knew it was really important to build in breaks, that people were going to have a hard time sitting for three hours in an online environment, unless we broke it up. So we gave them breaks every 20 minutes, we ask them to look away from their desktop for 20 seconds to close their eyes to breathe deeply. We played some music for them that lasted one minute, we asked him to stretch and stand up. And that will focus back in another minute when you're finished. And this turned out to be one of the most important innovations in what we did. Because it was very regular, it was predictable. They knew it was coming, they appreciated it. And it gave them that energy that they needed to carry on through three hours of instruction. So every 20 minutes, we 25 minutes, we did this. And then on the hour, he gave them a 10 minute break. And because that was regular, and we were very disciplined about it, they really that learners really appreciated it. And it helped them to maintain focus and attention. Okay, so when we started off, after we got through those preliminaries, the first 20 minutes, we gave them a break, as promised. And then we brought them back. And we said, well, now we're going to learn about each other. And what we did, just as I did at the beginning of this is that we gave them a mind mapping activity, before we told them anything about mind mapping. And we did this in the form of the Class Introductions, we all know, we get into a virtual session, we have to introduce ourselves, and everyone goes around the room. And most people are not paying attention, they're thinking about what they're going to say, they don't really focus in on what everybody else is gonna say, there's no documentation of it, there's no value to it that really lasts through things. So we decided to do was create a mind mapping activity, excuse me. That would function as the introductory exercise. And here's what we did. Now, granted, this was a course where mind mapping was going to be a part of the the training, and that's what you see up on the right hand corner. That's the actual instruction that you're going to get later. That's a mind map about how my eyeball had a mind map. What we, what we did here is that the instructor facilitator would create a slate, a mind map that had everyone's name on it, because we had the roster at a time, it had their location, and it had their job title. And what you can see here is that they had in the middle, you know, three stick figures, it's who we are. And we told them to get their pens and pencils out. And they were instructed to come to class with colored pens and pencils, and to be prepared. So they got their paper out. And I said, what we're gonna do is, as I'm gonna call on someone, and I'm gonna ask them what their favorite color is, because you can see my color on Joe, I'm in orange, it says, I'm the facilitator. My goal here is to help you learn, and I'm in San Francisco, I'm gonna say I'm gonna call on someone, and you're going to tell me what your favorite color is. And you can tell me what your goal for the training is. And I'm going to update the mind map in real time. And you're going to draw your mind map as we go along. And then when after the first person I call on, you're going to call on someone, and you can pick whoever you want. And they're going to have to say, you know, what, you learned what, what your goal was, and then tell their own, and then they pick someone. So it created a little bit of social positive, or what we call positive social pressure, and that you really had to pay attention to the prior speaker, because you didn't know when you were gonna get called on. And you had to reflect on what they had told about their goal. As a result, at the end, this is what the it was. This is just what we did, I went through that. This is what it looked like at the end. So they actually created for themselves their own mind map, they had no instruction about mind mapping. They just did the exercise, they just followed by instruction, and they created a whole picture of the class. And then when they had this down here, I instruct them to draw lines from your branches to others you feel you're connected with who has the same color, who's in the same location who has a similar job title, and it it gave them a way to get to know people and I told them that you're going to take this mind map and used it throughout the workshop so that when someone speaks up, you can make a note about something they said an insight they delivered a A connection that that you'd want to make with them. So before they got any instruction about mind mapping, they did a mind map. This is a difference between instruction and learner experience, they actually did something. And as you can imagine, the fact that they actually did it and said, hey, I can do this was a motivating factor in what came next. And what I asked him to compare what their experience it was, it was different from other instructional introductions activities that they've had in the past, you can imagine that they said, this was much better, I learned much more about everyone else, I feel much more connected. And as you can imagine, from a facilitator standpoint, you had an immediate early success, where you had credibility. And people were now like, wow, let's let's get this is really pretty good. When I'm learning and it's, it's different and fun. And let's move on with the rest of the program. Okay, so that's what we did. We use this neuroscience to build things in, I'm gonna go through the rest of it pretty quickly. So you can get a sense of how we applied all four of the variables. So attention. First of all, you can see from the picture there, this head, love this picture, you know, who's going to learn something out of the three students in this picture? You know, we have the young young lady on the right, who is attentive as her pen out as their papers she's prepared. We have the young fellow young man on the on the on the on the left, and he's daydreaming and he has have no idea what happened in the class. And we have the girl on the back who maybe a little bit in and out. So we know that attention, which is reflection. Linfox is involuntary, it's also selective. And we can choose what you can really what you really want to focus on. And so we wanted to do is make sure that we were designing an experience that would facilitate and optimize attention. Because the fool is focusing full attention on the knowledge or skill being learned is a recipe for stickiness. So we asked him, we told them, no multitasking. So I'm gonna give you guys a multitasking testing exercise. Give me a little bit of a break here. I don't know if you've ever done this. But what I'd like you to do is get out a piece of paper and draw us some lines like this. And what I want you to do is write this sentence, I want you to write multitasking is counterproductive. And then when you're finished with that, write the numbers one through 31 Because that's how many letters are in the sentence. Okay? And I want you to do that now. And give me some indication raise your hand or something when you're finished doing that, because I'm going to keep track of how long it takes you to do that. Okay, so ready, set go.

When you're finished, just give me a signal on the either in the chat or the on the screen. Okay, I see some people coming through. Okay, so that was about I think there's about 20 seconds right? Now now what I want you to do is on the space below is the same thing, except I want you to write each letter and then each number like this until you get to the end first the letter, then the number. Okay. All right, ready, set and then give you a signal when you're finished. So I know when you're done. Okay, go ahead

we're already at 20 seconds, and still no hands had been raised.

Worth 40 seconds

it's been almost a minute. Oh, there we go. There's one. And I suspect that a few more will be following but that's almost five times the amount of time it took you to do that. And not only did it take you longer to do that by quite a bit. I would ask you also, did you feel more stressful in the sense can exercise? Did you almost? Or did you make any mistakes or almost make a mistake? So in addition to taking longer? Was it more stressful? Was it more? Did you prone to more mistakes? Generally, the answers I get when I do this is of course, and you get if you do this and you know, this doesn't you can do this with any group that you're doing. Because you, when you're, if you're facilitating a workshop online or in it, no matter what, you want to get people paying attention, and you want, you want to show them how multitasking is not going to work. Because you're not really multitasking, you're task switching. So the first part of the exercise, you were single test, you were doing one thing, in the second exercise, you were switching back and forth. And that yeah, it's Bobby says I have your cognitive load. And and people are making mistakes it then that becomes stressful. And you know, all you know, it's it's a recipe for disaster. So we early on, we really showed people look, if you're in the session, don't be checking your email, we're gonna give you a break. Wait till the break is over. Because you're you are not going to be successful. Multitasking, if you want to get out of this class, what you really came here to do? Yeah, yeah. When people tell you, they, they're good at multitasking, just given this exercise. And, and the thing is, it's like, people don't understand that really, what they're not really actually multitasking. It's a misnomer, their task switching, and that's the problem. Okay, let's move on ahead. So various things, and I talked about this is my course, brain based elearning design, you know, what can you do? Insist on No, no multitasking, break things up in smaller pieces, keep things moving, very presentation of content, maintain and break patterns. You know, it's an interesting there, I said before, it's important to have give people certainty, but it's also important to maintain and break patent patterns. So those are just some quick guidelines for how to maintain attention. Now, generation, what am I learning? What do I already know? What is it mean? So this is what generation is all about. If you're familiar with constructivism, in learning theory, it's really the same thing as that. It's, it's getting learners to create their own meaning about what they're learning, as opposed to, you know, constructing a similar mental model that someone else is sort of putting in their head. You know, you want to activate and create associations with prior knowledge. One way to generate association is encouraged to learn how to evaluate the meaning of the information and compare it to their existing knowledge. So there was a little bit of this in that first exercise that I had to do about reflecting on what you already knew, we did this with the mind mapping, we did this first mind mapping exercise. So they learned a little bit about mind mapping, then we actually taught them how to do a mind map, by creating a mind map about mind mapping, then we asked them to create their own hand drawn happiness mind map. And then we gave them a tool, an automated, a mind mapping app to create their final exercise in the course. So they were continually building on what they had previously learned. And in this last mind mapping exercise, they were plotting out how they were going to take what they were learning into the future, this whole section, it's kind of small, there's a whole section here about you know, the the eight things you're going to do when you go back to work to apply what you've been learning, and how you're going to hold yourself to account and how you're going to be motivated to do that all using the Mind Map mapping techniques that they were using. So yeah, this is all about insight, you know, I gave you some reflection time, that might have been the first time that you really thought about the sessions that you had attended, since you attended them. And you, um, same thing is true of me. Sometimes you go to something, it's really great, you learn a lot, and then you don't think about it again. So we wanted to build in reflection time, and give them insight questions that guided them inward, guided them into their experience, as opposed to the content that they were learning about, what's your experience about what you're learning? Not? What is the content that you're now sort of amassing? Okay, let's get to a motion. Where were you? And what were you doing when any of these things happened? I gotta get some of my pictures here updated, too, because some of these things that people have already been born that are in my classes. So the point here, and I know you've all had this experience, you have a memorable event. And you remember what you were doing, where you are, who you are with, even though many other days you were with the same people doing the same things and you have no recollection of what was going on those days. But because you have a emotionality of around that event, it creates a more vivid memory. And so what you want to do in and what we did in this was create emotional triggers to grab and focus attention, which is the science activates this part of the brain called the amygdala. And it signals to the hippocampus, oh, this is important pay attention to this. And that's what locks it into long term memory. So you want to use emotion. And, you know, get people thinking about the science of in the science of motivation. Motivation is an important emotional trigger. What's your goal for this course? How will you use what you're learning? How will you do this on your own? How will you make it your own? How will you create progress towards mastery? How will you connect it to a larger purpose that you may have in your career or in your work life. And I used to stress all the time, the most important part of this course will happen when you're back at work. Same thing with this session, the most important thing about this session for you will be anything you take back to work and apply it to your your your work. First of all, it's important because you're actually using it. Secondly, it's important because you're reinforcing the lesson. And you're seeing the lesson in a different context and press sharing it with someone else, which is actually the reinforcement. So getting people to think about how the important thing is going to happen after this. It's not about the instruction itself. And this is why we built in a lot of triggers like this, you can see this little girl, she doesn't know what's in the box. But she knows that she's excited about, she's about to see what's in the box. And so we used to build triggers, along the way here of like, Hey, wait, do you see what's next in the training, or I'm really looking forward to tomorrow's session, because we're going to learn about this, this and this. And you're really going to like this, and just giving the learners cues in the virtual environment, about this would would prompt and guide their motivation for you know, paying attention and staying engaged and being involved with what was coming next. I used to do this all the time with please shoot. And when we used to do that, the chats and you know, we could we would be able to do this here if I had sort of a slightly different platform. And it was set up to do that. But you'll choose someone you'd like to hear from next. Or please read and comment on one of your colleagues chats. So it'd be like, for example, you know, Susan just left the chat on multitasking, I might ask, okay, everyone write a chat, reflecting on Susan's experience, and how it relates to your own experience. So we did a lot of this kind of thing. And I would say things like, I really want to hear from everyone. So we're not going to move forward until everyone writes in the chat. And you know, you could do that with 12 or 15 participants. And you know, what, over the course of the three half days, people that used to doing it, and they started to enjoy doing it. And they started to realize how much value they're getting in the learning from that kind of sharing and social activity. Okay, and went for it too far ahead. Yeah. You know, I used to start, you know, the third day, I would just say, I love day three, it's my favorite day of the of the session, because it's my third day three, everyone's lagging a little bit, they want to get to the end. And I would just pump them up by by presenting my own excitement about what was going to be coming. I love I love this cartoon. Now. You know, my course lacks interactivity, it has no point, I assume the software will take care of that. That was a great joke when we knew the software could do that. It's kind of ironic now because of all this AI stuff where now the software can take care of it. We're learning. It's kind of funny, right? So it's even better joke now. I assume AI would take care of it. And there's there's there's another joke behind that right, Bobby? Okay, so

the science and spacing. We all know this. I cram before a test. And I forget it all afterwards. If you are a crammer, in college, you know this from experience. And we know too, that we don't want to overwhelm people just drink from the higher Firehose thing. It's just an you know, when people say, Well, we're gonna You're really drinking from the firehose on this, it's like a really, you're gonna do that to me, because it's a complete waste of everyone's time, mine and yours. And so what we did was, make sure we were spacing things out over time, because we knew that would lead to higher retrieval of information and build stronger long term memory. So for example, the way it was designed first, all the mind mapping is on day one, all the memory techniques are on day two, and all the speed reading was done day three, we changed that so that there was a little bit of everything, and every class and each one built on the next one. So they they did mind mapping at the first day. They did more on the second day, and we're going on the third. So it was a recursive design. It allowed them to think about it overnight in their homework, and it gave them a much better chance of remembering things post the workshop. And then of course retrieval, you'll have that experience. Wait, wait, don't tell me the more you remember something and recall something destroying the memory is I'm going to skip through this here. Because I know we're running close it. Here's a metaphor I like to use when you first cut the path through the jungle with your machete. The Jungle jungle is like to go back, unless you come back and hack away some more, and come back and hack away some more until that neural network that interconnection, yes. interleaving is what it's called, is that you is that you're really creating a highway of connection that's really going to strengthen the memory going forward. And that's what we tried to build in, by having people do this exercise that I talked about before. And having them read articles that after they went to class, and then we also use this application called brains, called cue stream that gave them questions for three months after the class that would help them remember what the lessons were. Okay, the results of what the work that we did here, the average participant evaluation score, before we did this was 8.6. Not bad. But look what happened after we did this, the ages version of the course, gave consistent 9.8. And as a result of the redesign and the greater facility, they had to present present this material, there's been over 10,000 participants in counting of this of this program, at this high tech company. The learner experience, here's just some of it, the students reporting they felt so engaged, a virtual class, great classroom experience, structured full of content yet fun, engaging, conversational, learning is multi, and not just a one way coming from the instructor. So they, you know, they were responding to the design that we put into it. And it gave us the validation. Because this was an iterative process, we improve things as we went along, that they were responding to the application of the ages principles. Surprised was usually boring discipline is really great. The Golden Triangle exercise, that was that mind map I showed you at the beginning, a brilliant use of time, great way to summarize and make a country plan for how to apply it. Even the instructors that then use the materials that we built. So that was like we designed the instructional materials to give to the instructors to create this learner experience, you know, same kind of comments, they started to realize that they were facilitating an experience, and that we had designed the materials to do that, before that, they were just reading the content from the slides. And it was it was horrible. It was a terrible experience. Okay, so there we go. My contact information is my Here's my email, there's my LinkedIn profile. If you connect with me and work it out with Luis, I can share these slides with all of the text, I have a PDF of it. And I know that maybe you're not switching from a virtual instructor led to a virtual, but I can tell you, I've used these techniques, this ages techniques, and informs every design I do. And it's it's felt it's foolproof. These are my courses, if you connect with me on LinkedIn, I can give you a free link to the courses. This is a link to the brain studio folks if you're interested in what they do. And here's a link to the work. I've just done the T Mobile where I use the same techniques, and we just won a Brandon Hall Award for Best advancing compliance training. So thank you, Louis, thank you everyone, for listening to me and participating where I asked you to, I really appreciate it happy to share with this with you further as we go forward.

Luis Malbas  
Joe, that was great. That was fantastic. I think that like this is going to be one that I know, like the recording is going to be extremely valuable. There was a lot here, how did you do in DevLearn with this presentation,

Joe Pulichino  
it was it was great, except that we had some technical challenges at the beginning. And it cut into my time. So I didn't quite get to the final end, it was a little bit rushed at the end, unfortunately. But even so, you know, there's a lot of positive feedback and people came up and connected with me and it made me and everyone wanted copies and so it made me go back over the last month where I really refined the script that I was using, you know I created a whole little booklet from this in a PDF that has all the words of wisdom that I I went through today so that I can share that with everyone as well. Yeah,

Luis Malbas  
cuz I would actually love to see this one live myself like you know, the the presentation like if you were to do it again somewhere, I think it'd be fantastic. It's great just had so much to it. So Joe, thank you so much for spending some time with us today. Really appreciate it. And hopefully we'll have you back again anything you need from the community let me know okay, because I just love having you as a resource. Yeah,

Joe Pulichino  
I'm happy to be here come back anytime and just please connect with me I'm you know, I love the interaction with folks and I'm happy to share my work and you know, any help I can give any of you about any of this. I I'm available. So thanks, guys. Absolutely.

Luis Malbas  
And so what I'm going to do I know we got to, we got to jump because we have a session immediately after this one. But I do want to post your LinkedIn URL in chat for everybody. So please click on that. Connect with Joe. And with that, I'm gonna go ahead and close out the session. We got a short break here. So yeah, we've got a panel coming up next we're going to be talking about technology trends. And and have like three great participants. We have a pretty a pretty good group right now. So maybe, you know if you're interested in being part of the panel, anyone that is out there in the audience, we'd be happy to have you. So with that, I'm closing it out and we'll see everybody in the next one.

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