LTML launches NextEd, a new generation of online learning

Why start something you statistically will not finish? Though MOOCs have opened up learning to new audiences and caused big buzz over the past year, highly publicized issues remain. These include a staggering non-complete rate, often boring or confusing learning interfaces, and a lack of meaningful interaction and engagement between instructor and students — and between students themselves.
What if we could combine the reach and accessibility of a MOOC with an engaging user experience and online interface, a Facebook-like social network, meaningful interaction with an instructor who is more than a talking head, and authentic project-based learning? That’s precisely what the Learning Technologies Media Lab (LTML) at the University of Minnesota plans to accomplish via an innovative new learning initiative branded NextEd.
This January, LTML will launch NextEd with a course titled Designing for Experiences: Principles to Technology Transformation. Led by LTML’s Dr. Aaron Doering, an online innovator, Tech Awards laureate, and adventure learning pioneer, the course is targeted at anyone interested in learning to design and develop transformative technology-enhanced experiences for learners of any age. Course participants will explore multiple technologies and teaching strategies as they put into practice the principles they are learning.
“Transformative learning begins with transformative experiences,” Doering notes. “This online experience will guide and inspire teachers, corporate trainers, designers, and anyone interested in technology-enhanced learning to generate real change in online, hybrid, and mobile education.”
The NextEd courses offer an innovative course registration model as well, allowing participants to choose their level of enrollment and what type of recognition they will receive for completing the course — from a simple certificate of completion up through University of Minnesota graduate-level credit.
We invite everyone interested in exploring the next generation of learning to join us online in 2014. Stop being a MOOC number. Experience online learning in a whole new way!
For more details about NextEd and the Designing for Experiences course, visit