Providing training to more than 200,000 volunteers and professionals via its free eLearning platform, Kaya, the Humanitarian Leadership Academy (the Academy) is a non-profit global learning initiative training the next generation of humanitarians.
The Academy has an emphasis on preparing people to respond to crises in their own countries. The Kaya platform offers courses in English, French, and Arabic, covering a wide range of formats including on-demand webinars, videos, guides, and assessments. The Academy also works with 360 VR and interactive training mediums. Its global network assesses local needs and works with a range of partners to develop tailored learning material.
Gomo’s sister company LEO Learning has been working with the Academy since 2016 and, to date, they have produced five extensive eLearning courses, all authored in Gomo. These courses provide essential information on subjects such as health and nutrition, child protection, and coaching and mentoring, all in a humanitarian emergency context, and making use of Gomo’s powerful authoring features.
While the valued work of the humanitarian sector has many tried and tested approaches, the sheer scale, fluidity, and complexity of the challenges mean that new ideas are constantly needed for emerging problems.
The Academy approached LEO with a request to produce training focussed on innovation skills. The resulting course needed to help humanitarian workers better prime, recognize and nurture innovative thinking in themselves and their organizations. The primary audience included:
This varied audience, coupled with the English, French, and Arabic delivery requirement of Kaya content, required flexible authoring software. The content needed to be designed to allow for the best possible desktop and mobile experiences, while offering similar parity between all language versions (which in turn, needed to be easy for the Academy’s in-house translators to implement. Gomo was a vital component of this solution.
“Gomo’s flexible templates and all the different layout types and effects result in courses that look great and prime our trainees to learn, especially on mobile. The tool’s multilingual capability is naturally perfect for our international audience—the English content was easy to export and hand to our translators, and once they were done, importing their localized versions was just a simple.”
– Shona Henderson, Director of Global Learning Solutions.
The Academy provided access to a subject matter expert (SME) on innovation within the humanitarian sector, and LEO set about creating a draft script for the course based on the SME’s ideas and pre-publication thesis.
The centerpiece of the training was a 45-minute eLearning module, ‘Innovation Essentials’, built using Gomo. Using a custom template featuring familiar Humanitarian Leadership Academy brand colors, logos, and photography, the design is augmented with Gomo’s varied page transitions and advanced visual effects such as parallax scrolling.
Gomo's eLearning authoring tool allows LEO’s design team to follow all aspects of learning design best practice and produce an optimally paced learning environment with plenty of interactive elements aimed at cementing learner engagement. Individual topics are presented using a single vertical scrolling page foregrounding a sense of continuity while still allowing important points to stand alone. Elements such as clickable image hotspots, knowledge checks, and summaries help reinforce the material.
Finally, Gomo’s straightforward handling of multiple languages allowed the Academy to export LEO’s English language content, perform French and Arabic translation with their in-house staff, and import the resulting XLIFF files back into the system. No further editing was required to accommodate the right-to-left reading Arabic version—Gomo automatically achieves the best results with different written scripts.
The module was developed alongside a wider program in Kaya, which also featured:
“A lot of people have worked in this sector for decades and while the impression is that the work is important and helps a lot of people globally, you can’t keep repeating the same thing. There’s a need for new concepts and ideas. Innovation is a word that people use constantly but many don’t know what it actually means. There aren’t a lot of courses like ‘Innovation Essentials’ out there.”
– Anne Garçon, Digital Communications Advisor.
LEO’s blended learning solution was a big hit with the Academy’s audiences, and the ‘Innovation Essentials’ course has reached over 1,100 humanitarians, with 280 already recipients of HPass badges commemorating their completion of the course as of November 2019 .
In keeping with the Academy’s emphasis on tailoring training to local needs, the components of the innovation learning can easily be recontextualized within the learning experiences of regional learning managers and humanitarian workers. Similarly, Academy partners such as the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have used the learning as the basis for their own material.
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