Unlock Your Potential: Empower Yourself Through Self-Paced eLearning
The self-directed approach to gaining knowledge and expertise through eLearning is a cost effective and time efficient approach for both the business and the learner. Too often, eLearning is developed as a standalone ‘event’ where the isolated learner gets distracted, disengaged, or unmotivated to see it through.
The New York Times reported that “10 percent or fewer students complete free courses, while the completion rates for paid courses that grant certificates or degrees range from 40 percent to 90 percent.” If you don’t create a valuable experience, participant attention goes elsewhere. That attention is difficult to reclaim which means you have to make each moment meaningful, useful and enticing.
How might we maximize the power of individualized learning, the benefits of lower training costs, plus the convenience of remote learning? Understanding the ecosystem that surrounds an eLearning course is a good place to start.
The average human attention span is…oh look, a new TikTok …
Sorry, where was I .. oh that’s right, the average human attention span is 8.25 seconds. Attention spans can range from 2 seconds to over 20 minutes. The average human attention span decreased by almost 25% from 2000 to 2015. In light of recent technology advancements there is no reason to think it has improved. This may be attributed to our increase in digital consumption.
eLearning is technically another digital distraction. Even though it is a beneficial one. The challenge for learning professionals is how do we prevent distractions which are only a click away? As much as learning is not entertainment, it needs to be entertaining AND informative if it is going to compete in the digital overload that is our workday.
What can L&D professionals do to keep people engaged during eLearning consumption — and help bridge the gap from learning to application on the job? Consider incorporating the following techniques to leverage eLearning in your organization and better transition new skills to the workplace.
Simulate the Digital Environment
Good eLearning incorporates video vignettes, gamification, simulations, VR, and other engaging and interactive technologies to convey information. But great eLearning reapportions these concepts into smaller, more easily consumable micro units, giving learners the feeling that they are in their familiar, digitally overloaded world, but all of the content being consumed is relevant to the learning topic. Instead of fighting against the short attention span, feed it relevant information in consumable bite-size pieces.
Using eLearning in partnership with classroom or online instructor-led learning is a best-of-both-worlds approach. An eLearning module that reinforces what has been learned before moving on to the next concept helps both the learner and instructor ascertain if the learning has been successfully transferred. Alternatively, providing an introductory eLearning module before live instruction is an engaging way to prepare learners for instructor-led training and can be used to assess prior knowledge. You might also supplement the eLearning with scheduled coaching sessions to improve retention and application.
Gamification taps into what motivates us – recognition, reward, competition. If you know a gamer, you know they can sit for hours in a virtual world, striving for a badge or a high score. When they turn off that game, they have not necessarily improved anything in their actual life, but the desire and motivation to game is very persistent. Applying concepts of gaming helps to keep your learner engaged. Gamification can include solving a problem through a robust case study, leaderboards where learners are pitted against each other to see who answers the most questions correctly and badges for completion of specific content.
Learners need to know why their training is relevant and managers can help facilitate this. Before coursework and/or during employee/manager reviews, discussion should include how the eLearning is relevant to their role. After self-directed training is complete, a discussion of how the new skills are being put to use not only helps bridge the gap between training and application, it helps to track the ROI of the eLearning program.
What does this mean for the individual who wants to add more tools to their toolkit for their career journey? Coursera has over 8000 courses. LinkedIn Learning has over 20,000 courses. Making a selection can be a grueling experience in itself. We may be biased but we think you need to pick programs that have the maximum impact for the investment of your time.
Every organization has problems, decisions, risks, and actions to take. Having a baseline skillset to address those key issues is a prerequisite for a long and productive career. And Summer is a great time to invest in yourself and the people around you. Check out the deal on our eLearning offering.
To invest in yourself, check out our KT Refresher course bundle and use code KTREFINTRO30 to gift a friend the Intro Course at a discounted rate using the same code. Invest in your growth and inspire others to join you on this knowledge-filled adventure.