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Campus Technology Insider Podcast March 2022

Listen: From Instructional Design to Learning Experience Design: Understanding the Whole Student

Rhea Kelly: Hello and welcome to the Campus Technology Insider podcast! I'm Rhea Kelly, editor in chief of Campus Technology, and your host.

These days, we hear a lot about the "new normal" in higher education. Remote and hybrid learning is here to stay, offering students more flexibility in their learning journeys. But what if the new normal is not enough? According to my guests, it's time to go beyond the new normal and consider the "new possible" — how to put together the best of face-to-face, online and hybrid to create powerful learning experiences based on a deep understanding of the whole student. And that means evolving traditional approaches to instructional design to put the learner at the center of the design process. For this episode of the podcast, I spoke to Mark Milliron, senior vice president of Western Governors University and executive dean of the Teachers College, and Kim Round, academic programs director and associate dean of the Teachers College, about their vision for reimagining education and why learning experience design is essential to student success. Here's our chat.

Mark and Kim, welcome to the podcast.

Mark Milliron: Thanks, Rhea. Glad to be here.

Kim Round: So excited, Rhea, to chat with you today. Thanks for having us.

Kelly: So you both recently wrote an article advocating that it's time for education institutions to embrace learning experience design. And of course, I want to know what that all means. But also in the article, you begin with lessons learned from the pandemic. So I thought that would be a good place to start. How has the pandemic changed the way you think about the higher education student experience?

Milliron: Yeah I think the one of the things we have to keep in mind around the pandemic is, we've ended up with that kind of a mass conflation, where people have kind of mashed together their experiences with emergency remote learning, with kind of innovative learning, and especially the 20 years of online learning discipline that has been kind of coming together. And it's really unfortunate, because while a lot of really good work has happened — really let's be clear about it, there's some really innovative faculty members who did some great work during the pandemic. But it really was emergency, it was an, and the challenge with that is it's kind of like equating a life raft with a luxury liner: They both float, but they're very different experiences, right? And, and so one of the things we've, we've tried to make clear with learning experience design is this idea that something intentionally designed, especially with the student experience and the learning outcomes deeply in mind, is different than the kind of emergency remote work that we did. And as we vision what's possible on the road ahead, we just can't jump to the idea that oh, everyone found out how bad online learning is. Now we're gonna jump back to it, to the "normal" thing. And we often use the phrasing in our work that it's, you know, there's no going back to normal, new normal is probably not enough, we need to start thinking about what's the new possible. How do we put together the best of kind of face to face, online, hybrid, everything we have at our disposal, to kind of create the kind of powerful learning experiences that make sense. Kim, I know you feel pretty deeply about this. I'll let you go.

Round: Yeah, I really do. And I think that we knew, in higher ed, that we were making the shift, right? We're making the shift toward more hybrid and online learning models. And institutions were really at different points along that pathway when the pandemic hit. So, and our learners are very discerning now, right? They, they shop online, they, they have entertainment experiences online. So their bar is pretty high, in terms of what they might view as a quality online experience.

Milliron: Or just a quality experience. It's not even online, if they're used to multimodal, multi-channel, it's a holistic experience, right? So their idea is not one or the other, their idea is, what is the holistic learning experience gonna look like?

Round: Yeah, absolutely. And, and they're also balancing a lot these days. So, um, you know, empathy is really key. And we'll probably talk a little bit more about that, but empathy into action, and, and putting that really at the center of the design process.

Kelly: You know, for many years, of course, instructional design has been the thing that, you know, everyone knows it's important, that it makes a difference in terms of student outcomes. So what's the difference between instructional design and learning experience design?

Milliron: So I'm going to take a swing at it, and I'm gonna let Kim fix what I say. So, you know, I think instructional design as a discipline is, has done amazing work, and especially in the last 15, 20 years has been really good at kind of getting better clarity at the learning outcomes desired for the students. The challenge is, is we became kind of, we definitely got reductionistic about it, and we get, kept thinking about the class, right? And the realization, we say this all the time, college is not a collection of classes. College is a family of experience that happens to include classes. So the idea is, if you're going to do something like student experience design, learning experience design, you're thinking about, what, what are, who is that student, do you have a deep understanding of who that student is, can you meet them where they are, and then understand the learning journey, you want them to go on, that then will include classes, co-curricular support services, interactions with other students, and then begin to curate and create a set of experiences that make it more likely that that student with that kind of background experiences that learning, learning journey. The challenge for so many of us, and again, what was wonderful about the pandemic — it's horrible to say the phrase wonderful about the pandemic, but it is, we have to embrace the learning out of it — is it was a crash course in empathy. Where people had to take a deep breath and understand where their students were, what they're experiencing, and then begin to redesign based around that. So in many ways, Kim, I think you'll agree this was a crash course in learning experience design for a whole lot of people.

Round: It really is, and, and I start to think about the whole institution, as being everyone's a learning experience designer. You really need to think about, within your realm, what's the end to end learning, student experience. But to your point, Mark, I mean, traditional ID approaches really tended to put instruction and content at the center of the design process, right? And learning experience design really grew out of 20 years of online education, gamification, what we know about cognitive psychology, and looks at the more holistic view, putting that empathy for the learner and the learning experience at the center of the design process. So we start differently.

Milliron: It's really an evolution. It's an evolution. This is not about instructional design being bad, this being good. This is an evident, evolution of a discipline, and the realization that in so many colleges, universities and school districts around the country, there's a real disconnect between instruction and support services. And even the term support services feels pejorative to some people and feels like it's like an ancillary side thing, though, it's how, what is the family of experiences a student is experiencing as they're going through their educational process with you. And how can you weave those things together into true learning experience design. So many people have learned the value of co-curricular programs, of peer support, of other kinds of things, along with the instructional process that this is just the time for this to come together. And then you start thinking, what are the tools, what are the technologies, what are the kind of face to face time. So good example, we say this all the time. So many times in the last 100 years, in the world of education, we were using people time, face time, for things that could easily be done by technology and by tools. And what we say all the time is how can we use technology in a way where we can make human time precious, right? So the people time you're using with a student is really about engaging and motivating and connecting them, it's not about you know, just you know, pulling out pushing out information. That kind of spray and pray stuff just doesn't work, right, for the instructional side.

Kelly: I like how you called it an evolution. But it also makes me wonder, are these mutually exclusive approaches, you know, the instructional design versus learning experience design? Or is it possible to do both at the same time? Or how do you kind of conceive of that?

Round: Yeah, Rhea, I don't think they're mutually exclusive at all. I think LXD is really interdisciplinary. And, you know, as, as we talked about, just as we see these different disciplines coming in to inform that taxonomy — user experience design, learning theory, cognitive psychology — instructional design is part of that as well.

Milliron: It's part of the core. You can't do this, you really can't do learning experience design without getting instructional design at its core.

Round: Yeah. And we'll see learning experience designers use those ID processes. They'll use Understanding by Design and ADDIE and all of that. It's just the difference is where we start, you know, we, we start with the, the empathy piece.

Milliron: And it's also the aperture being bigger, right? This and making sure because, again, a lot of people have reduced this to classes in a context, right? And we're saying no, you've got to start thinking, you as an educational leader, think bigger and understand this is about curating and creating a family of experiences for a student, that will then, then helps you think about that learning journey that a given student is going on. And then that, that's a different kind of challenge and charge. And one of things I love about the program that Kim is building in particular around learning experience design, is the realization that hey, this happens in lots of contexts. So you go through the design lab in her program and then you pick your context: Are you gonna be doing this in K-12? Are you gonna do this in higher ed? Are you going to do this in the, in the employer-based learning world? The realization that in all those worlds, you have different learners with different needs and different journeys are going on, and you're probably going to do things in a very different way. If you're a traditional residential campus, if you're an online innovator like Western Governors, if you're a traditional K-12 school district, or if you're a corporate training office, all different contexts, but all of them require kind of learning experience design.

Kelly: That's a really interesting point. So basically, instructional design for each of those different instances might be different. But if you're thinking learning experience design, the core is the same no matter what the form of education is. So you know, when you're focusing on the student experience, and the holistic whole student, are there facets, facets of that student experience that are particularly important to pay attention to that maybe were overlooked in the past or that are particularly connected to learning.

Round: Yeah, I mean, I think, Rhea, there's much more of an awareness around how diversity, equity and inclusion plays out in the online space, creating experiences that include inclusive language, differentiation techniques, address accessibility concerns. There's the social and emotional learning component, we saw a lot of that since the advent of the pandemic and, you know, just because our learners and our instructors were under a great deal of stress. I think digital equity is huge now, it's really come to the forefront. How do we get all of our learners connected with the appropriate technology and network access? Mark, what, what else you think?

Milliron: Yeah. And I'm always gonna push it, as much as I love technology, I always say if you're doing it about technology, you're doing it for the wrong reasons. Technology is a tool against this challenge. You know, I think one of the biggest things has to do with the affective domain. So I'm a big fan of George Siemens and the work they've done with learning analytics. And what a lot of that research has shown is just how students feel about their learning experience means a lot. You know, their affective response to, Jane McGonigal talks about this a lot in her work with game, with gamification in particular. And so what we know is, and I always tell this to people who are thinking about their young kids and learning experiences, focus especially when they're under 10 years old, you want them to fall in love with the learning process. The last thing you want to do is to push them through a bunch of drill and kill stuff that's going to wipe out their spirit for, you know, for learning. You want them to fall in love with learning. And that's where you think about this idea, the experience they're going through is going to maybe take them to a range of different emotional responses, but it will connect them to the learning experience in some pretty profound ways. Let me give you a concrete example. We launched a new professional core for our K-12 program, initial licensure program. And that professional core, we really wanted to embed strong SEL, DEI, kind of equity based experiences and others. The hard thing is, it's great to write about that, use the right language, have them go through curricular materials, take assessments on it. But it's really hard to get that in practice. It's also hard in clinical experiences to ensure that they're going to experience that, right? It's kind of random acts of clinical experience. If they're in the right classroom at the right, with the right teacher at the right time, they really can see something in action. So we, one of things we did is we actually began experimenting with using AR/VR and we've developed a virtual reality experience, where students actually experience the challenge of doing an IEP with a special education student, the challenge of dealing with a DEI or dealing with a discipline incident. And by doing that, it's fascinating, the students just, it just immersed in that experience. And they're, they're effusive about how that experience pushed them. And they really, and they, they talk about how this wonderful kind of failsafe environment where they are able to go in and get reps and they could try it again and again. And then they could play it back with their instructor and have, and they'll basically say like that experience just brought everything to life for them and then gave them so much more confidence before they went into the real experience and the clinical side. I love that as a design tool, because it just kind of says okay, we're trying to bring that into a place where they're actually feeling it, touching it, sensing it, and then they have some reps with it. And they can fail, Rhea. The thing I love about that is they can fail and be okay, and then get some, get some reps and so they can get some more confidence under their belt. But that, that's the kind of design strategy you're trying to pull together is to make sure, because trust me, those students, when we interview them, they just wax poetic about the importance of that experience bringing the book to life or bringing the concepts to life, right, and then giving them more confidence when they were going to get into the kind of real world experiences of it.

Round: Well and that really moves it from a transactional approach to a transformational learning experience. That's amazing.

Milliron: Yeah. That completely began with understanding who these students were. And the fact that these are students who haven't been, many of them haven't been in deep instructional experiences, and reading about it is one thing, but feeling and touching it is a totally different thing. And so that VR experience gave them the ability to, again, to get a sense of it and get some reps at it before they actually went into the real practice. That was, but that was completely designed with the student in mind and understanding how we could take them from where they were. Now, again, you have to deal with things like do they have the right digital access to be able to do that? Do they have the right kind of support? So like, we've dealt with a whole bunch of things around the student context, but it was all built on that whole notion of who that student is, how we can help them have the right kind of experience, and then be able to kind of bring that into their clinical practice, their experience as an educator. Kim you probably have other examples, but I just, I'm in love with that experience. I love, because we just did all the student focus groups on this, and the students are just waxing poetic about it.

Round: Yeah, no I love, I love that example, Mark. And you know, it's interesting, I was talking to Elise, who's our director of assessment and curriculum for Teachers College. And we were just talking about this the other day, and we do practice what we preach, we really do. You know, we start with an umbrella idea of what, a market that, that might need a program, but we break it down, its learner segments, what are their pains, what are their gains, how might a program alleviate that. We start with personas and empathy maps, just even in our design process. And we begin to think about how might a program begin to address those needed skills and competencies to be successful in the workplace. And we bring in people who represent those personas, and test out those ideas and really get them to start responding. So once that pro, and once that program even launches, once it goes into early care we're still testing. We've got teams that are looking at those student journeys and progress and determining where are points of friction versus points of rigor, right? You know, where is the struggle leading to some deep learning versus some unnecessary friction that we need to address? So we're always in that continuous improvement place.

Kelly: Yeah I like that that term unnecessary friction, that says a lot.

Milliron: Yeah, they, teaching and learning should be challenging, not the bureaucracy.

Round: Right.

Kelly: Right.

Round: Right. And that's part of that whole, whole holistic piece, right? It's, it's the, it's the entire learning journey.

Kelly: So what are some challenges, I guess we can call them places of unnecessary friction, or barriers to learning experience design?

Milliron: Yeah, I think there, so I'm gonna let Kim dive into the challenge within building instructional experiences. Truthfully, I'm gonna open the aperture broader and say, so many colleges and universities over the last 10,15 years in particular, with the kind of rise of, of the real focus on helping more students finish what they start in higher education, and has really opened everybody's eyes. If you listen to Karen Stout, for example, at Achieving the Dream, talk, they have really learned the importance of holistic student support, understanding that students are leaving, often not because of academics. They're leaving because of life and logistics, they're leaving because of psychosocial issues, they're leaving because of basic needs issues. The Hope Center's work with Sara Goldrick-Rab has really discovered the need, needs around housing insecurity and food insecurity and the rest. And then you kind of realize, Wow, this is a, this is a holistic experience for the students. And for students who are well supported and can go through a very traditional experience, it's a different learning experience than, for example, our students are very often adult students, career changers, or people who have had significant challenges before who are now coming back. We're trying to kind of weave together a different set of experiences for them based on that. So part of what we're trying to do with learning experience design is to understand and open people's eyes to the idea that this is about the entire student journey. And you've got to start thinking about that, beginning with empathy, and then mapping that journey and thinking about what are that, what are the family of experiences from that orientation, the peer connections with them, how are you getting them the right support, are they developing kind of a near peer network as they're rolling through. The sequence of courses they take: Maybe they're, they're, they're coming back, they might need to go slow to go fast with math, for example. So the way, you know, so you know, in a traditional educational institution, for example, some people said, oh, it's got to be 15 to finish. Fifteen to finish, taking 15 credit hours in a given semester, might be amazing for one set of students. But it also might be tragic for another, right? If I've got three kids and I'm working a full-time job, taking five classes at the same time over 16 weeks might be a recipe for disaster. Whereas a competency-based model, where I can take one course at a time, makes all the sense in the world, just less cognitive load, right, in terms of the design. So I'm always going to push out on the aperture of this because that has been the lesson of the last 10 years is that we are doing deep learning experience design in all of our institutions. And there's not one best way, there's lots of great ways, because there's lots of different learning experiences, whether it's K-12, community colleges, higher ed or employer-based learning. Kim, I know you've, you feel pretty strongly about this all the way down into the instructional moment, right, thinking about how that moment plays out, because it's going from that big picture all the way down to that learning moment.

Round: Yeah, it is. And, and really, I, I think what's interesting is the amount of time that it takes to build a very intentional and empathetic learning experience is something that institutions need to invest in. And also those teams, it's the partnerships, right, it's the partnerships with faculty and building that trust, that faculty are the, they're the, the mentors, they're the subject matter experts they're the, they're the experts in their field. And the way that designers partner with them is so important, because we can be experts, in, you know, human computer interaction and learning theory and all of those things. And it's a puzzle piece that fits together, and it's a partnership. And it's a partnership that really needs to build trust in all types of organizations.

Milliron: It's the challenge of context as well. It's the realization, okay, what are the tools and resources and strategies that I can bring to bear in this design challenge? Western Governors, for example, has a very different set of opportunities, because we can walk in and say, Oh, we have a specialty faculty model, where we have some faculty who are nothing but program mentors, and all they do is mentor and guide a student along that journey. Others who are specialized course instructors, others who are specialized in doing assessment, others who are specialized in building programs. That's a very different model than traditional higher education. So we don't have kind of a general practitioner view of faculty where they have to do all those things, right? So we are able to deploy our learning design in a very different way than other places. If you're in another context, you might have to think about your constraints. And that's okay. I mean, you just have to deal with that. That is the traditional constraint you're gonna be wrestling with, is trying to, how do you optimize the learning experience in that context, given your constraints, given your resources, giving this, given the students you're trying to work with. And this is one of the things that's been really kind of painful for a lot of people to realize is, many people have designed learning experiences for students they wish they had, not for the students they actually had. I think, you know, if you look at Lorain Community College, Marcia Ballinger, who's their president, is quite eloquent when she talks about this. You know, that idea that, you know, designing for the students you have and loving the students you have is a different kind of you suddenly have a different charge for yourself. And when they realized, hey, one of their biggest mobile populations were women in poverty with kids, they had to ask themselves, are we well designed for women in poverty with kids? They were like, oh, no, we have to get our arms around this, we have to have childcare options, and different support services and the right, like other kinds of things for that. I just, again, it's a different kind of design challenge.

Round: One of my favorite experiences as a learning designer was at a different institution. And we were much more traditional, residential. And we had a professor who was bringing courses online for the first time, and he was a skeptic. And he taught philosophy, and so he knew how to make an argument. And so as, as we were working together, you know, he was so committed to the quality of that course, and really loved his students so much. And our biggest win was when he turned around at the end of it, and said, I feel like I know my students' hearts and minds better than I have in the 20 years of them being directly in front of me. Because we were able to design that experience from end to end, and no one could hide. And it ended up moving it not only as a transformational experience for the student, but it seemed like it was a bit of a transformational experience for the professor. And so that's just a, just an example of maybe a challenge of a mindset, and then how it moved. And so that was exciting.

Kelly: So institutional culture or faculty culture: Would you say that's still a big challenge at most institutions in terms of changing that mindset from ID to learning experience design?

Milliron: Yeah, I think we've learned a lot in the last, like I said, the last 10 years in the world of education, where people have really worked hard to figure out why students are, especially in access institutions, why students aren't finishing, what are their real challenges. And I think that's been so eye opening for so many people that I think there's probably a more of a willingness now than ever before. The pandemic then accelerated that, where we again, we had this kind of mass introduction to the possible digital tools, mass introduction to the need to bring empathy to the learning experience. Now, we see people who are experimenting with mastery-based learning who never would have touched it, you know, two years ago. We have people experimenting with online and hybrid learning who never would have touched it two years ago. I think we're in a really interesting spot right now, where, it's one of the reasons I, when we put that article together, "A Time for Learning Experience Designers," this is a perfect time, because we have so many people willing and eager to kind of think differently about how we're going to do this. But I think it's not about trying to denigrate the past, it's trying to understand this is part of an evolution of educational thought. And it's, in some ways, it's a coming back together to the kind of what we've always thought about educational experiences is the idea that, hey, they shouldn't be atomized and separated and siloed. These really should be kind of a holistic experience. But that takes intentionality. And it means that learning experience design can be done definitely at the class level, no doubt about it. But then you keep that aperture going back, think about it at the program level. Now let's think about it at the college level, let's think about it at the university level, think about it the school district level, let's think about it in your training department, in your, in your corporation, whatever it might be. I mean, you suddenly realize, oh, this is, this is a whole different thing than just doing classical instructional design or classical use of ed tech. Right? And that's where, you know, Kim your job gets a little messy when you're doing this, but, but it definitely kind of more exciting, because that's how students actually learn. They learn in context, right?

Round: Absolutely. And, as I say, you know, the expectations are, are higher, the bar is higher now. And, but we've got a lot of tools and, and practice at our fingertips. And that's important. And I think the way that learning design leaders show up in institutions and the way that their leaders perceive them, it's as a partnership, as a, as a back and forth that way, that's, it's just really important. And, you know, it was interesting, because a lot of my colleagues talked about before the pandemic, it was, they were brought in under a certain, they were almost in some ways, if you wanted to, if you had time to really do a quality job on it. And now, they found themselves kind of almost like ER physicians with patients going out into the hallway. So their importance as a critical factor in the institution…

Milliron: Has gone way up.

Round: It's gone way up! And so that's, that's an exciting piece.

Milliron: Again, I think people's eyes are open to it, Rhea. I think that we're at a time now where I think people are going to be thinking about how do you develop these learning experiences in a way that, one, you've got the low-level people are thinking about how do we have a continuity of service, right? If you ever have these kinds of disruptions again, how do you have tools and technologies that allow you to continue service? All the way up to Hey, instead of just using it for the low bar, let's use it for the high bar, which is how can we create the deepest and richest the most impactful learning experience possible. Like I said, for example, really making human moments precious, optimize the time you have with students, develop kind of really kind of rich experiences. That's where it's gonna get interesting, right? And that's where we really try to avoid the hyperbole of how great technology is or how great this is. This is really about a combination of, you know, design thinking, probably some data science, together with some, you know, real deep empathy work on the, the, the design thinking side especially, but then deep domain expertise. And that's where, like, you got to pull these things together, and when you do that, you can really kind of build some cool stuff. And students get it, and students can tell when something's been thrown together, or when something, or versus something that is intentionally designed. They kind of get to the end of it and like, Oh, I get why that was done.

Kelly: I like how you brought it back to technology, because that brings me to my next question. So I know you said technology is just a tool. But how can institutions kind of assess, you know, which tools are going to really enhance the student experience?

Round: I think it's always super important that the design leads everything.

Milliron: Yes.

Round: It leads the tool choice, and that's part of what we're really infusing in the new program is that we're not tools first, we are design first all the way. And one needs to build a muscle to evaluate the taxonomy of tools that are available and, and bring the right tool in at the right time. And, and sometimes it's a low-tech solution and, and, that will get you there fastest.

Milliron: Hey one of my favorite people in the field talking about this is John O'Brien, who's the president of Educause. And it's the largest, you know, CIO organization in the country, maybe in the world, in the world of higher education. But he, you know, I love, by the way, people don't know this about John, but John is an English PhD. He's not a technologist. And so him leading that organization is wonderful because one of the things he'll say is like, you know, you've got put technology on purpose. Like technology, it's not about the technology. It's like what, how can you leverage a technology to achieve a given purpose? And sometimes it's about, you don't need the technology, right? It's like, it's part of a mix of possibilities. So I think one is making sure the design leads the way, as Kim says, and second, I'm a big believer in you got to measure. You measure what you care about, you find out whether or not this is working, or whether it's not. Students will tell you quickly, whether or not, I mean they came to us fast with PowerPoint, they said, hey, hold your jets, man. A lot of people using PowerPoint have no power nor a point, think differently about how we're going to use it. And I think they get when it's used for glitz, and it's not used for learning. And they really appreciate when you don't leverage technology if you don't have to. But they love it when it works, when it's something that actually, you know, gleans in and it kind of in some ways goes to the background, it just becomes a part of the learning experience.

Kelly: Mark, I know you have some experience crossing over into the ed tech industry. So I'm curious, you know, what you think from like that perspective, what technology companies could be doing better in terms of supporting the student experience?

Milliron: I think part of it for the technology companies is really interacting and connecting with the educational institutions themselves, and then working with students to understand what's needed, what's working and what's not. I think part of the challenge is often the, there's a classic book in the IT world called The Inmates Are Running the Asylum. And in that book, it talks about this idea of, okay, we're gonna design a whole bunch of stuff and then convince people they need it, right? So for decades, everybody had a VCR that had a clock that flashed 12, right? Because you didn't need that clock feature on your VCR. We don't know why it was there, right? So they built all these features and functions and tried to convince people that that's what they needed. That's the wrong kind of design. Right? So I think in the ed tech world, it's just what Kim said, it's got to be purpose-driven design, where you're working directly with partners, and you pull it together. Now for them, they've got to figure out a sustainability strategy for the programs and products they're pulling together, totally get that. And so you got to, you know, they got to figure out their strategy of interacting and connecting around that. But the truth is, ed tech is always better served when it's clear about who are they trying to serve, what problem are they trying to solve, and how do they know when they're winning. When those things, three questions are clear, they're always better.

Kelly: Okay, final question. You've alluded to the, I think this a couple of times. So you're launching a Master of Science in Learning Experience Design and Education Technology this summer. So can you talk a little bit more about, about that program?

Round: I'm so excited to talk about the program. This is a program that really is practical, it's application-based. And we're incorporating seven really important cross-cutting themes with design thinking at the core of what we do. So designing for diversity, equity and inclusion, designing for social and emotional learning, baking in those learning analytics to let us know more intentionally what's, what's going on with learners and potentially trying to predict what experiences we want them to have. That discernment around learning technology, you know, an awareness of what's out there, a taxonomy of what's out there, but not letting the tool lead the design, as sometimes people get excited about that shiny object. And then it's like, I've got a hammer, and I want to use it. So, so that mindset, and then of course, universal design and accessibility. So we have two specialization options, too, because it really is focused on two very different populations. You know, we've got pedagogy approaches for our K-12 audience, we've got andragogy approaches for our folks in higher ed and corporate design. And so from that perspective, we are, we are offering that kind of personalization. And candidates could potentially do both if they wanted to.

Milliron: Yeah, that's the cool part about this program is they launch into the design lab work, and then they for their practicum, they pick their context. So they apply the practicum day that design lab work to the K 12 context, higher ed context. And by the way, if you're somebody who is hey, I'm, you know, I'm an SMU. That's a very different context than Austin Community College. That's a very different context than Leander School District. All three of them are different. So the idea is that learning designer would then come through that core design lab and then pick the context to specialize and all their work would be driven onto that context piece that allows you to kind of understand what they're designing for and the context, again, the constraints, the context, the people that they're going to be designing for, and allows them to kind of flex that skill as they're going in. I just love the fact that Kim, in classic Kim fashion, designed so that people can have the kind of outcome, it's not just one size fits all, it actually fits for the different kinds of learners who are coming through.

Kelly: Okay, thank you.

Round: It's been a great opportunity.

Kelly: Yeah. Thank you so much for coming on.

Milliron: Thank you so much. You can't tell we're excited about this, can you?

Kelly: Obviously not.

Thank you for joining us. I'm Rhea Kelly, and this was the Campus Technology Insider podcast. You can find us on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, Spotify and Stitcher, or visit us online at Let us know what you think of this episode and what you'd like to hear in the future. Until next time.

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