eLearning is the perfect answer to a training solution for many reasons which is why it is becoming more and more popular. However although saving costs, accessing the courses anywhere and everywhere and being able to make bullet points fly in are all key to eLearning's success, it doesn’t quite change the stigma that training, no matter what the format, is a chore.
2017 will be the year of personalization in eLearning. As eLearning becomes more and more popular, students will demand more interaction, entertainment, and personalization. Going forward, a one-size-fits-all approach will no longer be the norm. Personalization in eLearning can mean a few different things from creating personalized learning plans and paths based on an individual’s job role, learning style, to capitalizing on students’ personal interests and objectives. Simply, personalized eLearning is student-centered learning in which the learning needs of the individual become the primary focus. Furthermore, it has now been shown that when delivery of blanket content is not interesting enough or specifically relevant that learners become disconnected and uninspired or unmotivated to learn. So, the time has come for the learning department or officers to look at the individual rather than the organization as a whole differentiated and diagnostic within an individual’s personal make up as to what will make the their training program and objectives more effective.
It is the nerd in me, but I like it when I can base decisions on evidence from research. So when I found this study, "What drives a successful eLearning? An Empirical investigation of the critical factors influencing learning satisfaction,” I thought it would be worth reading. Although this study was conducted in an academic environment, there are important lessons for any eLearning designer about what makes eLearning effective.
In 2003, I worked on a project to break up long eLearning courses into shorter versions. In an early meeting to discuss how we would tackle the problem, the idea came up to “chunk” up the courses, so we called the project, “Chunky Monkey.” The catalyst was that we were getting direct feedback that the courses were too long, and in a call center, taking people off the phones is not something to do unless there is a darn good reason. We thought that by breaking up our eLearning courses into short modules, they could be completed during idle times between customer calls.
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.
One of the biggest challenges online training developers have is that they often have no background in online training. Online training is very different than face-to-face training, yet many classroom trainers inherit the online learning developer role simply because their organization has decided to begin offering online training.
A quick question. Why do you pay your employees?
As a trainer, it’s pretty intuitive to understand your role as an imparter of knowledge. Your students’ brains, in this common sense understanding of learning, are like buckets into which you dump key facts and concepts. Keeping those facts stuck there is simply a matter of will and hard work on the part of learners. If trainees want to retain what you have to teach them, it’s time for them to break out the highlighter pen and trusty notebook and hit the books.
From how we communicate, to how we work, to how we shop, advances in technology have radically changed how we go about nearly all aspects of our lives — with at least one notable exception. In classrooms from grammar school to Master’s programs, many teachers still wield chalk, lecture notes and overhead projector slides in the battle to impart knowledge to their students.