We all do it. We begin creating a training class, eLearning course, or presentation by sitting down at the computer, typing bullet points of the important things we need to present. If we are in a groove, we can create five to ten slides pretty quickly in a rough first draft. When we get to a stopping point, we look back and can be quite proud of our first draft.
When it comes to writing training survey questions, the most important principles is to write questions that seek responses on which you can take action. After all, isn't that the point of survey responses? You want to collect feedback so that you can improve your training course. Yet, too often, we write questions that no one answers or that seek responses on which we have no way of making improvements. Either way, we have survey data that is useless except that we can tell our stakeholders and check the box: Yes, we survey our learners.
Two questions any eLearning designer should ask when designing a course are, "How will I know if this eLearning course is effective and how will I define effective?" Certainly every professional, no matter what the field, is concerned about doing great work and knowing how he/she will know when that great work is achieved. A surgeon wants to know whether a procedure is effective. A mechanic wants to know whether a repair works. An eLearning designer wants to know whether a training course is effective.
Writing a training course is not much different than writing a blog post, an article, or a book. At some point, you will need to sit down and just plain start writing. Anyone who creates any type of content has had to face the dreaded writer's block. Even learning designers get to a point in which they are sitting at the computer staring at a blank screen, and asking themselves, "OK, what do I write now?"
Too many eLearning courses are lectures in the form of slides with content that learners must either read or listen to. The content usually contains abstract topics, such as processes, that learners are then expected to apply in real life. The problem is that there is a gap between a concept in a course and applying it in action.
One problem that faces learning and development professionals is that people do not necessarily flock to your course catalog to complete the eLearning you worked so hard to develop. Sure they may complete the required courses after receiving a third and final message with the word MANDATORY in the subject line, but they do not seem to be taking the other valuable courses in your catalog.
Gone are the days when you have as much time as you need to deliver an effective training class. Few businesses are willing to dedicate the time necessary for people to learn new skills. After all, proper training is time consuming, expensive, and organizations need to operate as efficiently as possible. You have likely experienced this first hand in conversations with business managers in which you explain why a class requires four hours, while the manager tells you she can only give you ninety minutes.
If you have been paying even the slightest attention to technology news or you get out of your house once in a while, you know that mobile is a staggering trend threatening to make desktop computers and even laptops obsolete. And while that may be a slight exaggeration, it is no exaggeration to say that mobile is growing fast and becoming a normal part of how people work, communicate, and consume content.
There are plenty of "general" reasons to implement e-learning in your company. For example, you could deliver training to anyone in the world, people can complete training at their own pace, and you can provide a consistent message in your courses. These are just a few ways that you can benefit from e-learning, and there are certainly plenty of others.