E-learning is everywhere—newspapers, magazines, your snail mail box, and your e-mail inbox. It seems as if every training site is getting into Web-based training, online learning, or the e-learning business. Trainers need to understand these offerings and sort out which are the best for our personal and professional needs. KnowledgeNet, one player in the e-learning market, is the focus of this week’s Web review.

According to their Web site, KnowledgeNet’s basic business strategy is to provide technical training solutions via the Internet. The company offers three training delivery options, which they call Live, Express, and Interactive. The site allows you to learn more about each of these delivery options through Flash 4 applets. In short, the options range from standard Web-based delivery (interactive) to real-time training over the Internet (live).

Course catalog
The site’s focus is solely technical training. It offers courses on products from three organizations: Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA. More specifically, the Microsoft offerings include Office 2000, Office 97, and Microsoft Technical topics. The site offers five Cisco courses and two CompTIA courses as well. In each case, the catalog lists the certifications that apply to the certification course offering. The catalog also describes which delivery options are available for each course. I was disappointed to find that all of the Microsoft Office offerings are available only in the more standard Interactive method.

Two sections in the resources area are valuable whether you use KnowledgeNet courses or not. You will find a nice selection of articles in HTML format about certification issues. The Recommendations section offers a useful tool to help you determine the course format (based on what KnowledgeNet offers, of course). Need to prepare foryour CCNA, CCNP, or MCSE? The skill assessment tool should be very helpful, although it is currently available only for Cisco certification. A Microsoft certification skills assessment is under development.

Other notes
Two other services described on the site jumped out at me. As with many e-learning sites, KnowledgeNet will customize their courses to fit your needs. Their demo Flash 4 of this feature is a nice touch. They also offer an online coaching service called KnowledgeNet Mentor. A two-minute Flash applet describes this service.

Final impressions
If you are looking for e-learning vendors, KnowledgeNet should be on your list of places to visit. This site seems to offer competitively priced online learning courses, and differentiates itself by offering the live delivery format. However, in judging a Web site’s overall usefulness, I look for content beyond the sales brochure. This site meets this goal in some ways, mostly due to the Resources section. For those reasons I recommend that you take a look at KnowledgeNet.com.

Here is Kevin’s review of KnowledgeNet.com.

To comment on this article or suggest other Web sites to review, write to Kevin with your ideas.