Plymouth (UK), February 2017 - Kate Nicholls, Head of Innovation at learning company Sponge UK, has won a second award recognising her talent as a digital-learning designer. At the Learning and Performance Institute's (LPI) Learning Awards, she was named Learning Professional of the Year (bronze winner). It's her second major award, after taking the gold prize for Learning Technologies Designer of the Year at the Learning Technologies Awards 2016-17.
Working with some of the biggest global brands, like Toyota, Tesco, and Google, Kate is pioneering new technologies and approaches to make digital learning more inspiring and successful.
"Now that my role is in innovation, I tend to focus on finding ways to exploit cutting-edge applications of technology for learning," said Kate. "I am able to ask 'what if ... ?' to drive more courageous and mould-breaking solutions. One of the barriers to innovative and effective workplace learning is the way work is commissioned. We need to avoid baking the solution in as a foregone conclusion if we want to open up the possibilities."
Most recently, Kate has worked on a year-long project to explore the learning applications of interactive 360° video and virtual reality (VR). She said, "My starting point for the project was a question, 'Can 360° content aid learning, and if so, how?' By combining eLearning tools with the latest 360° filming techniques, we've been able to add an interactive layer to 360° video. This innovation is opening up the learning potential of 360° and VR and making the technology more accessible for organisations."