What is a Reusable Learning Object (RLO)?
The IEEE Learning Technology Standards Committee defines learning objects as “any entity, digital or non-digital, which can be used, reused or referenced during technology-supported learning.” When you consider that by ‘non-digital’ they mean “people, organizations and events”, you can see that this is a very broad definition indeed and not one that takes you very far forward.
Perhaps a more general definition may be appropriate: “A learning object is a small, reusable component that can be selectively applied – alone or in combination – by computer software, learning facilitators or learners themselves, to meet individual needs for learning or performance support.”
Personally, I believe true RLO’s are years away; the “Holy Grail RLO’s” (ones that work with anyone, anything, anywhere, anytime) are far from existence. Their current nonexistence shouldn’t deter us from building useful reusable assets like bots, templates, wizards, automated code testers and maintainers, etc. that improve our lives and our clients’ profitability. I call these RLA’s or Reusable Learning Assets. RLA’s are less defined, less compatible with the rest of the world, but work very well for a specific situation.
Click the links below to explore a few examples of RLA’s.