Please note that this overview is absolutely NOT a replacement for reading the materials or taking a certification course.
Any comments about TOGAF in this blog are my personal opinion, understanding and application.
I will be linking to appropriate pictures so you can see the source material.
One of the things I like about TOGAF is that it deals in layers – from general to specific.
Here is the general picture of the framework.
Enterprise Strategic Architecture – all of the IT systems in our organization, including contracted cloud solutions. Our learning ecosystem is meant to mesh in with this greater Enterprise layer as much as possible.
From the beginning, one of the key tenants of the ecosystem was to
integrate and mesh with the greater environment as much as possible. Because this is where people spend most of their time working. At least in my world. And I’m in higher ed. My audience doesn’t do their day-to-day work in the LMS. At least last I checked.
It is also (in my mind) a win-win for both the educators and IT. We get the tools we need to do our business quickly, the enterprise maximizes their IT investment, and it is much easier for the IT group to support us.
Segment Architecture (we are here) – for the purpose of the Learning Ecosystem, we are dividing this segment based on function. “Is it used for executing ‘learning’ stuff?” This level will help define the interconnections between the various applications and tools we use in practice. In this layer, we are looking at start-to-finish workflows, the tools we use to execute those workflows, and how everything inter-relates. It’s the “Program Management” layer – with “Learning Technologies” as the program.
When we are talking about start-to-finish workflows, we are not only talking about the technologies. We are talking about what people are doing. Handoffs. Choices and exceptions. How people actually do their work. In any of these methodologies driven by technologists, despite the best of intentions by the designers….application tends to be technology focused. Less messy. I’m trying not to fall into that trap.
Capability Layer – for the purpose of the Learning Ecosystem, this is the individual piece. For instance, SkillPort LMS would be a Capability layer. All of the information about SkillPort (direct connections in and out, contracts, workflows, etc) would be within that specific capability. Another capability layer would be set up for WebEx. Another for the training portal we are developing using SharePoint. Another for classroom registration. Another for instructional design….
The capability layers should NOT be limited to technology and the technologies we use. We’re trying to get a clear picture of all of our activities so we can plan a strategy and make decisions.
The first challenge, for me, is going to be making sure I have all of the capabilities defined in a way that captures everything that should be in the Learning Ecosystem and that makes sense to people.
I’ll be sharing these as I get these layers more tightly defined.