Washington starts e-learning

Washington state launched a statewide e-learning network that will provide more than 70,000 employees at its 83 state agencies with access to 1,200 courses they can use to upgrade computer, information technology and business skills.

The network uses a fully hosted system provided by GeoLearning. It's a standalone system developed just for Washington that will provide the backbone for the state's current and future online learning programs, said Will Hipwell, GeoLearning's vice president of marketing.

The network's users and administrators only need access to the Internet. The system otherwise is self-contained, and includes all of the functionality required to track such things as learner registration, course development and delivery, progress tracking and Web-based reporting.

That one-stop packaging, and clear cost advantages, made the hosted solution a compelling choice, said David Dobson, e-learning program manager in Washington's Department of Personnel's Organizational and Employee Development Services.

Hipwell said GeoLearning has developed a similar system for New Jersey, whose homeland security department is using it for such things as competency development for 145,000 emergency workers and first responders.

Robinson is a freelance journalist based in Portland, Ore. He can be reached at hullite@mindspring.com.

About the Author

Brian Robinson is a freelance writer based in Portland, Ore.

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