Author Archives: Craig Jensen

Why Sleep When You Can Drink Coffee? (Part 3)

My two previous blogs discussed both coffee/caffeine and sleep, to an extent, and the way they operate individually.  Now let’s address an important question regarding their overlap with one another:

Can coffee be an effective replacement for sleep when it comes to brain functioning and mental capabilities, specifically with learning and memorizing?

Unfortunately, the answer is a resounding “not really”.

To see why this is true, let’s briefly look at the three main components of learning/memorizing:

  • Acquisition/encoding, which is the actual experiencing of something new
  • Consolidation/storage, where information is made smaller and committed to memory
  • Recall/retrieval, which is the ability to remember a memory later on

Acquisition and recall happen while you are awake: you consciously consume new information or try and remember old information. However, consolidation—which is essential to learning and remembering something long term because it is when our brain forms new neural connections to store information—happens mostly during sleep.

A recent study performed by researchers at Johns Hopkins and UC-Irvine found that caffeine can in fact help memory consolidation if it is consumed shortly after someone learns something new. This would suggest that it does impact step 2, even though the caffeine is consumed while you are awake and consolidation happens while you are asleep.

Without sleep, the impact of the caffeine on memory would be negligible because there
wouldn’t be time for the brain to actually perform the task of consolidation anyway.

One of the biggest reasons why we cannot learn well without enough sleep is because of the timing of when we memorize things during sleep and how long it takes for one cycle of sleep to complete.

Just like the repairing of our muscles, our brain restores itself most during deep sleep (stages 3 and 4 of NREM) and REM sleep.

It takes roughly 70-90 minutes for our body to enter into REM sleep, which is the most important stage for learning and memory. Once there, we only spend about 20 minutes in REM during our first sleep cycle. As we progress into further cycles, we begin to spend more and more time in REM sleep.

So, it is easy to see why we do not learn well when we aren’t sleeping well: our brains need a good amount of time in REM sleep, but we don’t get it unless we stay asleep for multiple cycles.

Adults need roughly 7.5-9 hours of sleep per night (yikes, I never get that much) to be fully functional (some need more and a few less), which is roughly 4-6 cycles of sleep. Thus, sleeping 4-6 hours a night means you could be missing multiple cycles of REM-rich sleep that you need for your brain to consolidate memories and remember processes.

And this is only talking about missing one night of good sleep. The reality is that many of us are consistently losing sleep on a night-to-night basis, resulting in sleep deprivation.

Unfortunately, something many people may not Sleep Versus Coffeeknow is that sleep deprivation is cumulative. This means that if you go 5 days in a row with those 4-6 hours of sleep, you could be 10-20 hours in debt, rather than just a couple hours from an individual night. Because the amount you need to sleep does not reset from night to night, over time this built up sleep debt will cause you to consistently perform worse in almost every area—cognitive, physical, reaction time, etc.

While coffee can help a little bit for a short time to combat this, it simply cannot overcome such a significant and powerful phenomenon. Plus, the extra jolt you get from coffee to help ward off sleep deprivation probably isn’t making you more focused than you would be if you had a proper amount of sleep. Rather, it is simply trying to get you close to the level of efficiency you would be operating at if you had the right amount of sleep in the first place. And, when the coffee wears off, you will feel extra tired because your brain is being overloaded with the sleep-inducing chemical adenosine that the caffeine is no longer blocking.

With this in mind, the conclusion is that there is simply no replacement for sleep. Almost all the research shows that sleep is potentially the most important thing you can do for your emotional, physical, and mental health, and for your ability to learn.

Coffee can help you to an extent when you aren’t able to rest up fully, but it can never truly serve as a replacement for a good night’s rest, especially when it comes to your ability to learn and remember things.

Ultimately, your ability to concentrate, perform, and learn is at its prime when you have the right number of hours of sleep, not the right number of cups of coffee.

Happy sleeping, enjoy your coffee, and happy learning,

Craig

About the Author


craig-photoCraig Jensen
 is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Why Sleep When You Can Drink Coffee? (Part 2)

Sleep is one of the biggest mysteries … why do we need it?

Although we still can’t really answer that question properly, scientists have made strides in understanding what it does, how it works, and what happens to our bodies and brains when we aren’t getting enough of it.

My last post discussed coffee/caffeine and how it affects our brain.  Following this blog post, I will look at how coffee and caffeine overlap with sleep, and whether caffeine can actually help to replace sleep.Getting Sleep

Before looking at that relationship, however, let’s look at how sleep works so that we know what we are dealing with.

Here’s some of what we know: (a snoozer for you if you don’t like facts)

Sleep is comprised of two different stages: NREM (non-rapid eye movement) and REM (rapid eye movement). A majority of our time sleeping is spent in NREM (roughly 75-80 percent) which has four stages of its own where we move progressively deeper into sleep. After these four stages, we move into REM (the other 20-25 %), where we get some of our deepest and most restorative sleep.

NREM begins with a very light stage 1 sleep where we drift in and out of being awake and asleep for about 10-20 minutes. After this, we enter stage 2, which is deeper and more stable. We spend about 50 percent of our total time asleep in this stage.

Once we move to stage 3 and 4, we enter SWS (slow-wave sleep), or “deep sleep.” Our blood pressure and body temperature drop, as does our breathing rate. Our muscle tissue and energy begin to be restored, partially because of the release of different hormones. During these stages we have little-to-no eye movement or muscle activity. Our brain also begins to consolidate memories, which is an essential function for not only remembering and recalling information later on, but also for making room for new memories to be stored.

After the 4 stages of NREM sleep, we finally enter into REM sleep. Here, true to its name, our eyes move rapidly as we dream vividly. Our breathing becomes quick and irregular and our muscles often become paralyzed, although our heart rate and blood pressure rise. REM sleep, along with stage 3 and 4 of NREM, is essential because of its physical, mental, and emotionally restorative powers.

Even though we don’t know why we need sleep, it is clear that it is incredibly important. Sleep’s restorative functions facilitate much of our mental and physical health, including our ability to learn efficiently.

But, the real question is, is sleep essential for learning? We already know that coffee allows our brain to fire more neurons when it is consumed because the caffeine blocks the chemical adenosine responsible for slowing down nerve activity. Firing more neurons allows for higher brain activity/efficiency and more capacity for performing tasks.

Isn’t that enough to facilitate learning?

Sorry for the teaser but… Stay tuned for part 3.

Craig

 

About the Author


craig-photoCraig Jensen
 is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Why Sleep When You Can Drink Coffee?

As I am sitting in my office trying hard to not fall asleep, I am realizing I didn’t get enough sleep last night.  If you are like me (and 82% of adults nationwide), you probably drink many cups of coffee every morning. It not only feels like a great way to wake up but also seems to help create an energy boost after not sleeping enough the night before.

I am always interested in learning, so I’ve looked into the effects of both coffee and sleep on the body and the brain, specifically.  It’s fascinating–in my opinion–how coffee and sleep can impact your ability to learn.

I’ll start with coffee, and if you don’t want to know the fascinating stuff, just read the next
sentence then go pour yourself a cup.

CoffeeBoostMost of us know that caffeine is a stimulant but few likely know how drinking a cup actually affects us, other than making us feel more alert.

Coffee (caffeine) doesn’t really provide a boost of new energy.  It actually tricks our brain into thinking that we aren’t running out of the energy that we already have. This is because, to the brain, caffeine looks just like the chemical adenosine, which is naturally released over the course of a day.

Adenosine is largely what is responsible for causing us to become sleepy because as it builds up over the day and binds to receptors in the brain, it slows down nerve cell activity, causing you to progressively feel the need to sleep and recuperate.  However, because caffeine looks like adenosine to the brain, when it is ingested, it binds to these receptors and blocks the adenosine from doing so. Because caffeine doesn’t have the same “slowing” effect as adenosine, your brain doesn’t register that it’s time for sleep.

Because of this effect, you become less drowsy and your brain is able to fire neurons at a higher pace and continue working at a better efficiency.  The problem with this is that we “crash” later in the day because all of the built up adenosine that has been blocked can finally rush to the receptors, overloading them and bringing a feeling of extreme drowsiness.

In addition to its ability to “block” sleepiness, caffeine also helps produce adrenaline, which makes the heart beat faster and increases blood flow. And, some recent studies seem to indicate that if you consume coffee right after learning something new, there is a better chance you will be able to remember it the next day.

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ, above was a real snoozer, huh?

Of course, “everything in moderation:” scientists say that up to 400 mg of caffeine is ok on a daily basis, but anything more could become excessive. That’s the equivalent of about 4-5 cups of coffee, 10 cans of caffeinated pop, or two energy drink shots, depending on the strength of each drink.

One downside is that if you drink coffee (caffeine) consistently, your body will build up a “tolerance” (this is actually your brain adding more adenosine receptors that the caffeine can bind to) and thus will require more of it to achieve the same effect. The easiest way to limit this is to be mindful; try to limit your caffeine intake when possible so that when you do need that boost, you won’t have to take in an unhealthy amount of caffeine.

So, is coffee a sufficient replacement/solution for not sleeping enough? And does it impact learning?

Stay tuned,

Craig

 

About the Author


craig-photoCraig Jensen
 is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Learn, Retain, And Succeed

Previously, I addressed the different ways in which people learn best. I referenced the VARK guide to different learning styles, designed by Neil Fleming. He outlined four main learning styles: Visual, Aural, Read/Write, and Kinesthetic. Fleming identified many factors/dimensions that can also affect how well we learn on a case-by-case basis, but overall these other considerations and external factors are usually secondary to the four VARK styles.

I think of the four styles above in simple terms: See, Listen, Read, Do. People learn best in one or more of these styles and each person is unique, which is why I think it is critical that people be able to pick the learning style or styles that fit them best. The best learning content will encompass all four of these styles.

Many articles relating to different learning styles and effective methods of retaining information are centered on improvements in a school/education based setting. These may seem irrelevant for someone focused on Web development or IT training.

However, if you take the time to read some of these articles and think about the information contained within them, you can find valuable knowledge that will help with your ability and approach to learning and mastering web development and new applications.

One article like this is featured in the New York Times under the “Well” tab of their “Health” section.  In it, author Tara Parker-Pope summarized a recently published book titled How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens written by fellow NYT author Benedict Carey.

The link of the NYTimes article is shown at the bottom of this blog, check it out.

Parker-Pope (via Carey) suggests that even though someone may receive good grades on an exam, that doesn’t mean that they truly or effectively learned the material they were studying (I am sure many of us have first-hand experience with this). The reason for this is that many people “cram” a large amount of information during one session, often at the last minute. While this may work as a short-term solution (like for a test the next day), it is rare for cramming to be an effective method for understanding and remembering information, processes, and concepts long-term. The brain functions better for long-term learning when it studies and practices things multiple times over a spaced-out stretch of time. Attempting to learn massive amounts of information in one session can overload it and sap its ability to categorize information as being important enough to remember permanently.

So what does this have to do with mastering Developer, IT Pro and/or Design skills?

We know the importance of understanding the best style or styles in which you learn (VARK). We also know that having access to content that spans all of these styles is invaluable—which is why we offer many different forms of our material—because it allows every individual to play to their unique learning-style strengths.

Equally as important to effective learning, though—as this New York Times article highlights—is more than just understanding your learning styles, and having content that compliments them: it also includes the way in which you go about taking in, absorbing, and remembering that content.

The amount of information involved with learning and mastering a new application or developer’s tool can easily become overwhelming if you do not have a solid, manageable approach. You may not always comprehend things right away, and sometimes you may need to revisit different sections of a training program to get a better grasp on certain content or concepts.

The best content should allow you to take things step-by-step, piece-by-piece. Online content is especially great because it allows you to revisit anything at any time, and from any location. Mapping out the most effective and efficient learning plan for you based off your learning styles, learning pace, and the content you will be consuming can go a long way towards helping you succeed in your career.

When it comes to online Developer, IT Pro, and Design skills, you should strive to learn as efficiently and effectively as you can. You should seek out the most accessible, diverse, and up-to-date training on the market, from knowledgeable professionals who truly want to help you achieve your learning goals. You should demand a training solution that offers a variety of different tools and styles—whether that be video, courseware and books, pre and post-testing, hands-on labs, “follow the expert” or “try it out” features, or even simply written training manuscripts for those who prefer to internalize through reading.

Pace yourself, and know that learning these different technologies and tools is often a marathon, not a sprint. Figure out your learning styles and use our training tools to play to those strengths. Don’t be afraid to review concepts you need more practice with, and if you are using LearnNowOnline as your guide, utilize our pre-tests to determine what you need help with and out post-tests to see how well you are mastering the material. Additionally, make sure you are keeping yourself healthy and happy outside of work too—whether that is through good eating, exercise and/or (especially!) sleeping habits—so that you are ready and able to focus on learning when you are on the job (more about eating and sleeping later).

Happy Learning

Craig

 

Check out the article “Better ways to learn” at

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/10/06/better-ways-to-learn/?_r=0

For more info on the Vark Guide see http://vark-learn.com/home/

 

About the Author


craig-photoCraig Jensen
 is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

 

What Makes the Best Reference Material

What is the best material to use when you want to learn a new topic within development or IT? If you are an experienced developer or IT pro, what is the best reference material to use?

These questions come up often, and typically developers and IT pros look at reference material and training material as coming from two different sources.  In my opinion, you need robust learning material that can first be used as training and subsequently as reference material.

Generally if someone needs to learn a skill (like how to effectively manage a project), a programming language (like C# or JavaScript), or a technology (like SharePoint or SQL Server), they will look for learning material that is focused on that specific subject. Many will look for “courses” on the topic thinking that is all they need. Effective developers and IT pros will instead look for “solutions” that will give them the best approach to solving their issue both in learning the subject from beginning to advanced and for reference material later.

Great reference material…

  • Is very searchable, including the ability to easily filter and find the needed material quickly.
  • Is built with short learning bytes so the user can learn it fast and get back to work.
  • Fits different learning styles.
  • Is practical and thorough.

Great training material has many of the same attributes…

  • Is well-organized, taking the learner from intro level concepts to advanced development.
  • Includes varied learning resources that will work well for different learning styles – learning visually, plus learning by doing, listening and reading. Many people learn best from different learning modalities.
  • Includes labs and “try-it-outs” so a person can practice and reinforce what he or she has learned.

Once you have learned your new skill, language, or technology, you are not done learning. You will continue to learn on-the-job and through trial and error. And sometimes you’ll encounter issues where you don’t know or can’t remember what to do.

When reference material is needed to solve a problem, what do you look for? Ideally it is best for developers and IT pros to find training material that also can function as easy-to-use reference material, such as…

  • Providing a strong search/filter system so you can find what you need quickly. There is nothing worse than needing a quick answer on how to do something and then spending hours searching for that answer. You need to find it fast, learn it fast, and get on with your life.
  • Being concise to best address your specific issue quickly. You don’t want to listen to someone blab on and on in a training video who never gets to the point. You need specific, practical advice—not training where the ego of the instructor gets in the way.
  • Training material that covers multiple learning modalities: read, listen, watch, do.

LearnNowOnline training has been designed to be excellent resource for both training and reference material, including:

  • Resources that will support all learning modalities: video training, ebooks/courseware, sample code, hands-on labs, and “try-it-outs.”
  • The best search/filter system to help you to access what you need quickly and easily.
  • Videos built in 5-10 minute nuggets so you can learn exactly what you need fast.
  • Content that is thorough, deep and comprehensive, written and presented by the best experts in that technology.

If you need learning resources for SharePoint, Visual Studio, SQL Server, JavaScript, PMP or other Developer and IT Pro technologies, I invite you to check out LearnNowOnline for yourself and experience a solution that provides both excellent training AND reference material.

About the Author

Craig PhotoCraig Jensen is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Training or reference material?

newdudethinking

Just like all of us learn in different ways, each of us also has different uses and needs for our technology training resources. When it’s time to find a training or reference tool, what is right for you?

Do you go for the least expensive and save a few bucks? Do you look for volume and choose the solution with the most hours of training? Do you choose a training tool or a reference tool…or can one solution give you both?

In most cases, the cheapest or largest learning solution will not be the answer you need. For example, if you need to learn a technology from start to finish, a YouTube video isn’t going to get the job done. If you need some quick help with a project, taking a week-long class is going to be overkill.

I have heard many people say, “I paid for a training solution, but once I started using it, it wasn’t able to solve my problem.” That’s why I think it’s always best to look beyond price and volume of training initially, and instead take a few moments to clarify your needs and what issues you are trying to solve. Ask yourself these simple questions:

  • What is your learning style? (see my April 28 and May 15 posts)
  • Are you new to development/programming, or are you experienced?
  • Are you looking to solve problems or learn specific new skills?
  • Do you need to learn a new technology from scratch?

Your answers to these questions are going to point you in the direction of the right learning resource. Ideally the ultimate learning tool has it all. It supports your learning style(s); it’s versatile for all skill levels; and it’s flexible enough to serve as both an in-depth training resource for new skills and technologies, as well as on-the-spot reference material to help you with your day-to-day questions.

There are a lot of training tools out there, but for Developers and IT Pros, I truly think we’ve got the best. We have built our learning material to be an excellent resource no matter what your learning style, and have designed our solution so you can learn a topic or technology from intro to advanced, as well as use it as ongoing reference material. And as your needs change (you become more experienced, you have new projects and technologies to tackle, you get a new job), our up-to-date content and versatile delivery will continue to help you get the job done.

Give us a try and see what you think.

In future blogs I will discuss what makes the best reference material and the best training material. Stay tuned…

About the Author

Craig PhotoCraig Jensen is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Good Enough?

puzzle4pc

Is just any learning tool good enough? Should you settle for watching videos, even though you learn best by reading?

In my last blog, Does Everyone Learn the Same Way?, I described the four main learning styles: Visual, Aural, Read/Write, and Kinesthetic. In short, research shows that most people learn in more than one way, and many tap into all four learning styles.

  • 61.2% prefer more than one learning style
  • 34.1% use all four learning styles

Each of us is unique, and we each learn in different ways. There is not a “one fits all” learning style.

One way that helped me see and understand different learning styles was volunteering in my children’s grade school. I would visit their classrooms weekly and help the kids with reading, writing, etc. Some of the kids could hear something and immediately understand it, memorize it, and later recite it.  Some needed to read it one or more times on their own before it would sink in. Still others needed to follow along with the book while I read to them. Occasionally a child would grasp something quickly with one learning method—for example, they couldn’t read well, but if they watched a video of the material they could comprehend it immediately.

It became so clear to me that in order for individuals and groups to learn effectively, they need to have access to many ways to learn.

Each person is an individual and learns differently. Take me for example. I am one of the 61% of people who uses multiple learning styles. When learning something new, I’m at my best when I am able to watch and listen to someone explain the material, read along in a book or on-screen, and then try it for myself. Whenever possible I even try to teach someone else the material…in order to teach something well, you really need to understand it.

So, don’t settle  for a learning tool geared toward only one learning style—like a tool with just videos, or just books—and figure it’s good enough. You’ll learn faster and retain more when you discover what type of learner you are and then choose a learning tool or method that supports all of the ways you learn.

LearnNowOnline recognizes that learning styles matter and offers a Dev and IT learning subscription with something for everyone, including resources that nurture all learning modalities.

About the Author

Craig PhotoCraig Jensen is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.

Does everyone learn the same way?

einsteinboy

Are there differences in learning styles from one person to another? Does an application developer learn the same way as an IT professional? Does a computer user learn Microsoft Office the same way a programmer learns web development?

Success comes from having the right technical knowledge, coupled with the ability to work effectively and efficiently. This requires you to use the right training and reference material to get up to speed in your technology of choice. Will “just any” training material do? In my opinion, you will have the most success with training material that fits your learning style or styles.

According to Neil Fleming, designer of the VARK a guide to learning styles, there may actually be 18+ dimensions of learning, including temperature, light, food intake, biorhythms, etc. He went on to identify four main learning styles in his research:

  • V – Visual
  • A – Aural
  • R – Read/Write
  • K – Kinesthetic

Studies at www.vark-learn.com categorized people by learning style based on a questionnaire. The studies identified that most people use multiple learning styles, with Kinesthetic being used to some degree by the largest share of learners.

  • 61.6% prefer more than one learning style
  • 34.1% use all four learning styles

Clearly there is not one dominant learning style, most people are multi-modal. Because of this, an effective learning tool must support all learning modalities, not just one or two.

At LearnNowOnline, we believe that whether you are a SharePoint developer, a Windows Server administrator, or a project manager, you’ll learn best by using a method consistent with your preferred learning style or styles.

That’s why our learning content is designed to accommodate ALL learning styles with a variety of learning resources like video, eBooks, transcripts, closed captioning, hands-on labs, sample code, and pre/post exams.

Here’s how LearnNowOnline resources support each of the VARK learning styles:

V – Visual
View key information graphically via video and eBooks with flow charts, diagrams, graphs, screen captures, sample code and more.

A – Aural
Listen as experts lecture on key concepts and take you step-by-step through real-world examples.

R – Read/Write
Read comprehensive eBooks (online courseware), searchable transcripts, closed captioning; bookmark key points in video and add notes.

K – Kinesthetic
Watch real-world video demonstrations; perform hands-on lab exercises and work with sample code; complete pre/post exams.

LearnNowOnline recognizes that learning styles matter, and offers something for everyone by including resources that nurture all learning modalities. When choosing training and resources to help you learn new skills and technologies, be sure to set yourself up for success by choosing a tool that supports all of the ways you learn.

Some Food For Thought:

  • What type of a learner are you? (Not sure? Take the VARK questionnaire.)
  • Are you an efficient and effective developer, IT pro, or computer user?
  • Do you use reference and training material that fits your learning style?
  • Does your training material cover all the learning modalities?

 

About the Author

Craig PhotoCraig Jensen is the President and CEO of LearnNowOnline. Craig has led the company’s change from instructor-led classroom training, to self-study CD/DVD training, to the award winning online learning solutions offered today. Craig is passionate about helping individuals and businesses of all sizes solve their problems through practical learning and technology. He is involved in setting direction for the company, including selecting training content for development with resources to support all learning styles. He is also involved in The CEO Roundtable organization in the Twin Cities as well as the Minnesota High Tech organization. In his spare time, Craig loves to travel, golf, and partake in water sports of all kinds.