This paper describes the analytical section of Lear-B (Learning Biosis), a first research prototype to address some of the challenges inherent to workplace learning, such as its informal aspect, the need to support workers in their self-regulatory learning (SRL) processes, the importance of collective and social sharing of the workplace knowledge and its "on-demand" and contextual characteristics.
The authors stress in particular the role of the workplace community in the development of knowledge and the necessity of each individual to develop a correct and useful Self-Regulatory Learning (SRL) approach. These aspects highlights some of the characteristics that a support IT tool should provide, such as:
- Collection of learning–related contributions and their re-aggregation, analysis to create further new knowledge, as well as sharing results to users.
- Identification of learning needs for individuals and self-setting of personal learning goals.
- Monitoring and comparison of users learning progress.
- Share of users learning experiences.
- Necessity to integrate data from different tools and services that are used by workers in their everyday working.
In this prototype, Learning Analytics plays an important role: according to the authors, Learning Analytics "allows for the organization to better align its learning objectives with those of its employees by knowing about their learning practic-es; it supports users’ SRL processes by providing them with the necessary input from the social context of the workplace; and it enhances the motivation of individuals to take part in learning and knowledge building activities and sharing their experiences by providing them with feedback from the collective."
The paper describes then the internal environment of Lear-B (which integrates also wiki, social networking and bookmarking functionalities), indicating how the analysis of the platform is albe to enhance knowledge tracking, workers engagement and individual and collective learning improvements.