Preface to Learning Design: A Handbook on Modelling and Delivering Networked Education and Training
The Valkenburg Group
In March 2002, thirty-three experts in e-learning from four continents met each other for the first time in Valkenburg aan de Geul, a small village in the south of The Netherlands. Since then, the group, referred to as the Valkenburg Group, has met several times at different locations to explore how to improve the pedagogical quality of e-learning courses, in an interoperable way, with user-friendly tools. The general feeling of the experts was that most of the current e-learning offerings lack one or more of these aspects: they are of poor pedagogical quality, they lack portability, or they lack adequate tooling. Pedagogical quality is considered to be the key issue. To be successful, e-learning must offer effective and attractive courses and programmes to learners, while at the same time providing a pleasant and effective work environment for staff members who have the task of developing course materials, planning the learning processes, providing tutoring, and assessing performance.