We all know the world of learning is changing rapidly and with that new tasks and roles will emerge. One of the most important roles is Curator. You will see more and more subject matter experts taking on this role and I believe all eLearning developers should also develop curation skills. In this post I will look at the curation role in more detail and show you how easygenerator will facilitate the curation process.
Curation and the role of a curator
There are a lot of definitions and interpretations of curation and curator. So let’s first define what we mean by it, which I can best explain with an example.
An art museum typically collects paintings. Since the museum is not able to show all its paintings, someone is needed who can make a selection of the paintings that will be part of an exhibition. That selection is often based on a theme (a period, a style, or a person). It is the role of the curator to determine a theme that supports the selected paintings. A good curator however, will do more, by adding context.. For example, showing the artistic development of a painter by exhibiting paintings chronologically from him from every year of his live. Also content will be added to this exhibition. Info on the painter, his live, info on the paintings, relations with other painters, related art movements et cetera.
In short a curator:
- collects (or uses an existing collection)
- selects (a part of the collection)
- adds context (or a story)
Curation will play an increasingly important role in eLearning and ePerformance. One of the main challenges today is to find the correct information. Everything is available through the web but it is a hell of a job to find that piece of information that is what you need, is accurate and true. So you need a middleman to help you find that information. There is software who does this in a way, it is called aggregation software. It can collect information on the web en order it based on keywords. The website elearninglearning.com is a great example of a very good aggregator. But that is only step one (collecting). The selection and context need to be added by a human. Someone you can trust and someone with knowledge on a specific topic. This role can be fulfilled by an subject matter expert with specific domain knowledge, or an eLearning developer.
On my personal blog I wrote some posts on curation, you can read them for more background:
- A presentation at ASTD2014: 4 ways to use curation in learning
- A presentation by David Kelly on Curation at ASTD 2013
Creating the “exhibition” is one step but then you have to display it. Easygenerator will provide a solution for that. Our curation publication will be added to our tool this summer. It will help the curator to organize, publish and share his curated collection.
I have included a mock-up, it is a sketch of the possible solution in pdf. It will give you an idea of our plans. Feel free to check it out and if you have any remarks, comments or ideas, you can leave them at this post or email me at [email protected]sygenerator.com.