Welcome to our first issue of Leading Links for 2022. With this being a popular time of year for trends and predictions, we thought we’d change things up a bit with this issue and do a round-up of some the trends and predictions content that has caught our eye.
First, we’ll mention that:
- We’ll host our first Leading Learning Webinar of the year, LMS Selection in the Evolving Learning Landscape, on February 3. Many thanks to Web Courseworks for sponsoring. Get the details and register >>
- Our latest podcast episode features Ray Schroeder of UPCEA and the University of Illinois Springfield. When it comes to trends in continuing education and professional development, you don’t want to miss what Ray has to say. Listen and learn with Ray Schroeder >>
Please consider sharing the above links and this newsletter with your colleagues, followers, etc.
Now, on to the links.
2022 Trends and Predictions Links
Here’s what we’ve rounded up to help you gain a little foresight and navigate the 2022 learning business landscape successfully. We’ll also highlight some common themes that popped in multiple articles. These include:
- Higher ed disruption: As traditional colleges and universities lose enrollments and struggle to adapt to market needs the implications for lifelong learning providers are likely to be profound.
- Employment market needs: Demand for learning providers of all stripes to better meet employer and employee needs is rising.
- Flexibility, adaptability, personalization; While hardly new to 2022, buzzwords like these are solidifying into firm expectations.
- More cloud, more power, more data: These essential aspects of modern computing continue to evolve, dramatically impacting when, where, and how learning can happen.
- Artificial, virtual, encrypted: Concepts like artificial intelligence, the metaverse, and blockchain have been around for years. we’re inching very close to a tipping point on uptake – again, with profound implications for learning experiences.
We highlight our own thoughts about the evolving landscape in The 2022 Learning Business Landscape. Here are some of the specific other sources from which we extrapolated the themes above:
A Decade of MOOCs: A Review of Stats and Trends for Large-Scale Online Courses in 2021
MOOCs come in for a lot of bad press, but viewed objectively, it’s really hard to deny that they have a large – and still growing – impact on the lifelong learning landscape. A key point in this article: the audience with which MOOCs most resonate is professional learners. And, increasingly, the new content is coming not through the traditional university partnerships on which MOOCs were founded, but through large corporations – particularly big tech companies like Google.
3 major trends affecting ed tech companies
Like the above article, this one focuses on higher ed, but the three key points it makes apply more broadly. First, we’re seeing a lot of consolidation in the the edtech and learntech markets. Second, we’re seeing a shift in who is driving the content – namely, employers. Third, all of this is a threat to higher ed – which may translate into opportunities or similar threats for traditional providers of continuing education and professional development.
eLearning Hype Curve: Our Predictions for 2022
We’re grateful to Web Courseworks for publishing this valuable resource every year – one every learning business should study. It’s based on data, but drawing purely on our own experience and perspectives, we would put MOOCs on the slope of enlightenment. We’d also argue that social learning, in its latest phase, is nowhere near the peak of inflated expectations. Blockchain, the metaverse, and microcredentials will certainly be responsible for a lot of buzz (if not outright noise) in 2022. Finally, we’re kind of heartened that podcasts leave others on the “peak” list in the dust. We wonder how much of a trough they will experience.
7 Emerging Trends Shaping the Future of Work, Careers and Professional Development
This article from WBT Systems spotlights the key trends driving the overall need for more flexible, adaptive learning solutions that better meet employee and employer needs. In planning for 2022, you could do worse than to have a focused conversation in your learning business around how you are evolving to respond to each of these trends.
Outlook for 2022: 10 Trends to Consider for Professional, Continuing and Online (PCO) Education
Jim Fong of UPCEA always has insightful things to say. He focuses on higher ed, but as we always argue, understanding what’s going on in higher ed is essential for understanding what will drive evolution of the adult lifelong learning market. And #10 in Jim’s list is essential: “Accommodating the Nontraditional Student or ‘New Adult Learner.'” This is the territory of every learning business, and it’s part of why we have suggested that even shifts as radical as associations replacing colleges can’t be ruled out.
The Top Learning & Development Priorities for 2022
We highlight this SH!FT post – which is focused on internal rather than market-facing L&D – because it emphasizes the need to meet learners where they are in life and in work. Ongoing skills development, personalized and adaptive experiences, learning in the flow of work, social learning: all watch words for serving our learners (and, again, their employers) well.
The Top 10 Technology and Business Trends of 2022
We end with this more general look at business and technology to emphasis that we are seeing serious growth and expansion in 5G/6G availability, satellite internet usage, and high performance computing. These will inevitably have a significant impact on the possibilities for AI, virtual – including the metaverse – and wider spread adoption of blockchain and related technologies like NFTs (both of which have a role to play in credentialing and certification markets).
That’s it for this edition. In parting, we’ll note that you can access previous issues of Leading Links (starting with the December, 2020 edition). Be sure to check them out – there are bound to be valuable resources you missed or have forgotten about. We encourage you to use them as a catalyst for your own learning and for discussions with colleagues.