In a famous quote some years back the CEO of Cisco predicted that e-learning would be more important than the Internet itself.
Has this become a reality?
Well, even I who works with e-learning would probably say "no".
In fact you very seldom hear the word e-learning anymore. Does this means that e-learning has failed?
Far from it!
E-learning has become so popular that today we take it for granted. We all see it as a normal alternative to traditional (old fashion...) classroom training.
This is in the same way as we don't talk about a "color-TV" or a "stereo radio" anymore - we take it for granted.
In her blog Karen O'Leonard from Bersin gives some figures on the use of e-learning.
In 2009 33% of all training was taken on-line, either as self-paced learning or by participating in live virtual classes. In other words: 1 of every 3 hours of training was taken online in 2009!
Is this as big as the Internet? - no, but if you had told people a couple of years back that 1 in 3 corporate training hours would be e-learning, they would have thought you were crazy (or that you worked with e-learning yourself ?).
So what can we expect going forward?
My prediction is that in a couple of years the ratio of e-learning to classroom training will go towards 1:1. No one will really notice, we will only see that more and more training will be available as one or another form of e-learning.
One trend that many of us predicted some years back was that a lot of training would be offered simultaneous as e-learning and classroom training.
This has not turned out to be the truth, and now my prediction is that it never will.
If the topic is suited to e-learning it is a waste of time to also offer it as classroom training, and if the topic is not suited to e-learning - well why bother.
So here is a toast to e-learning that has become so popular that it is disappearing as a concept!