Learning and Development Blog

5 Secrets for Increasing Employees’ Product Knowledge

By Serafim Mendonca on Mar 16, 2016 3:20:28 PM

Starbucks is doing something right. In addition to brewing a good cup of java, the coffee chain has become an industry standard for excellent product knowledge and service, as well as employee satisfaction. How do they do it?


Perhaps it’s because Starbucks is one of the few Fortune 500 companies that spends more on employee training than on advertising. All baristas complete a certification program and are given tools to help with on-the-job knowledge, including the Coffee Passport and the Green Apron Book, both of which contain concise information about different drinks and tuck discreetly into the barista’s apron pocket.

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Topics: Gamification, Mobile Learning, Tips for Effective Courses

Increasing Learner Motivation with Gamification

By Bill Neville on Oct 8, 2015 12:28:43 PM

The problem with trying to learn a new subject is that a long period of study and application has to happen before real results can be seen. Learning to code doesn’t happen overnight; likewise, you certainly can’t expect to arrive in Paris after one French lesson and anticipate being able to carry on a conversation.


So often there’s a slump in the beginning of a new learning endeavor, when the learner struggles with justifying the hard work of study without seeing real promise of a reward. During this period, motivation drops and instructor-based efforts to engage learners in the course can be rather difficult.


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Topics: Instructional Design, Gamification, Tips for Effective Courses

Digital Badges: Do They Help or Hurt Your Online Reputation?

By D.J. Mendonca on Oct 9, 2014 2:52:07 AM

Digital badges are a fairly new phenomenon on the Internet. Educators (especially online universities), companies (particularly online companies) and people who work in Internet-based fields award and post digital badges as a form of accreditation in a particular specialty. When posted on a website, a digital badge attests to an individual’s skills or mastery of a subject through training, without necessarily a formal diploma or certificate. A badge on a university site signifies that the school teaches that subject. Organizations post badges to establish themselves in a niche market.

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Topics: Industry News, Gamification, Learning Theories

Should You Gamify eLearning?

By Serafim Mendonca on May 2, 2014 9:50:24 AM

Corporate America today utilizes online learning and computer-based courses for employee training with great regularity. It is flexible and fast, giving employees the knowledge they need quickly, with no classrooms or conflicting schedules. One way that eLearning engages people to the greatest degree is through gamifying the courses. Gamification uses digital games to make learning more engaging and fun for students of all ages. For employees, this type of eLearning is more engaging because it allows competition among peers and offers incentives for completing tasks, like badges or virtual currency that can be exchanged for rewards. Gaming is now a widely accepted process for learning and discovery at all ages - including children, secondary education, and with business professionals.


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Topics: Instructional Design, Industry News, Gamification

5 Elements To Integrate From Top Mobile Learning Apps

By Brianne Bailey on Apr 11, 2014 6:53:14 AM

While there is no surefire formula for building a successful and popular learning app or platform, it can’t hurt to take a look at the successful competition and extract essential elements from their products. We decided to do just that, and found that five elements stood out from the crowd. While it isn’t possible for every platform to incorporate all five of these elements (and some may not want to), a quick look at the top ranked educational apps revealed a combination of at least five of them.


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Topics: Instructional Design, Gamification, Mobile Learning

Games Make Communications Serious Fun

By Cristina Mendonca on Oct 12, 2011 2:00:24 AM

In The 2020 Workplace: How Innovative Companies Attract, Develop, and Keep Tomorrow’s Employees Today (HarperCollins, 2010), authors Jeanne Meister and Karie Willyerd note that several trends are combining to create the workplace of tomorrow. Currently, members of five distinct generations are in the workforce. Members of the youngest generations have grown up in a world that is global, digital, and hyperconnected, and they value work that is participative and entertaining.


As a result, one of Meister and Willyerd’s 20 predictions for the 2020 workplace is that the corporate curriculum will use video games, simulations, and alternate reality games as key delivery modes.

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Topics: Industry News, Gamification

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