In an effort to provide low-cost training opportunities, the USGS has obtained an enterprise license for Skillsoft's full courseware for Fiscal Year 2014. From October 1, 2013, to September 30, 2014, USGS Federal Employees and Volunteers can access the entire library. All new Federal hires in Fiscal Year 2014 will automatically be assigned a Skillsoft license when their DOI LEARN account is created.
A variety of Skillsoft courses meet the annual 4-hour EEO and Diversity requirement for managers and supervisors. There is a new tab in DOI LEARN, on the "My Home" screen, titled “EEO, Diversity & Ethics Courses” for viewing acceptable courses.
For individuals with IT Role Based Security Training (RBST) requirements, DOI will announce applicable RBST course names in February, 2014. RBST options will include Skillsoft as well as internal and external courses. RBST information is maintained on the USGS RBST website: http://internal.usgs.gov/gio/security/security_training_rbst.html.
For additional information on the vast selection of online courses available via Skillsoft and for frequently asked questions (FAQs), please visit: http://www.doi.gov/doilearn/skillsoft_info.cfm.
There is a lot of learning out there on Skillsoft. The USGS encourages you to maximize the use of this valuable resource!
Blended Learning Resources (BLR)
Some Skillsoft courses offer supplemental materials, known as Blended Learning Resources (BLR). These materials help Instructors and Supervisors to provide certain courses by combining face-to-face and webinar sessions, to supplement existing online Skillsoft courses.
For example, Leadership Essentials: Leading with Emotional Intelligence can be supplemented with a facilitated activity using these Skillsoft BLRs:
- Using Emotional Intelligence–Assessment Activity
- Improving Your Perception–Assessment Activity
- Responding to Different Emotional States–Activity Guide
- Preparing to Facilitate–Activity Guide
After an employee completes the online course, Instructors, Supervisors, etc. can use the BLRs to create follow-on content for discussion. A list of the many Skillsoft courses that have BLRs may be found at: BLR and Video Release Schedule.
There is no charge for these materials. The Blended Learning Resources are found within the “Resources Area” for online courses. More information about BLRs and additional Skillsoft courses may be found at: http://www.doi.gov/doilearn/skillsoft_info.cfm.
We wanted to make you aware of new behavior users may be experiencing since the latest Oracle Java JRE updates. After upgrading to JRE versions 1.7.0_55 or 1.8.0_05, users may be seeing the following additional warning message when launching some Java applets:
This message is due to a change that Oracle made to the Java security model. The user must click Allow, or the applet will be unable to communicate. Additionally, the user may click the Do not show this again for this app and web site checkbox in order to suppress the message on future applet launches.
The caller-allowable-codebase attribute was introduced in an earlier version of JRE 1.7.0 and it allows an applet to specify what domains are allowed to communicate with it. Because our applets may be installed in either Skillsoft-hosted environments or customer/partner-hosted environments, we are unable to specify an explicit list of domains that are allowed to launch our applets. Therefore, we specify the wildcard (*) so that the Player is allowed to communicate with any domain it is launched from. Until JRE 1.7.0_51, this worked fine. However, as of JRE 1.7.0_55 and JRE 1.8.0_05, Java will now prompt the user if an applet attempts to allow wildcard (*) as the value for the caller-allowable-codebase attribute.
Despite our best efforts to test with a pre-release version JRE 1.7.0_60, this new behavior was not discovered until the production versions of the JRE was released. This behavior was also not present in the initial release of JRE 1.8, but was introduced with the latest 1.8.0_05 release.
Skillsoft is investigating ways that we might suppress this additional prompt, but in the meantime, users will be required to click Allow in order for the applet to launch successfully.