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So your latest eLearning course has been released to the organization amid much anticipation and excitement. All of the time and energy that went into developing this new training will now finally begin to pay dividends. However, the hoped-for participation and interest on the part of the workforce just never materialized. What went wrong? Is the course too long? Is it too difficult? Maybe our research into the type of training the employees want was off. Whatever the explanation, this is often the fate of new eLearning initiatives.
Designing eLearning for the modern workforce is both an art and a science. There are techniques and strategies you can incorporate that will help to make your corporate eLearning efforts more successful, and to encourage more participation from employees. Incorporating these strategies into your next eLearning project could make all the difference when it comes to whether your audience buys in or opts out. Here are 7 tips you can use to help improve eLearning participation rates among your workforce audience.
Use simulations. The most engaging training is that which allows learners to be immersed in the lesson being delivered. Simulations are a great way to incorporate real-life situations and to create interest and engagement within your training audience. Examples of how simulations can be used in eLearning include customer service training, where the responses to a situation lead to differing levels of escalation or appeasement. An employee can then see within a simulated environment the results of certain customer service tools or techniques. This type of training design can be used to meet a variety of situations and needs, including 3D training simulations and virtual world creation.
Gamify your eLearning. The use of game elements and mechanics in a non-game setting such as corporate training can be a very effective way of encouraging participation. Using techniques like points and rewards, team competition, and the recognition of top performers can stimulate and motivate employees to participate in your eLearning lesson. Gamification has been shown to create more active engagement in learners, and results in better retention of the information being delivered.
Make your eLearning social. For some employees, any type of computer-based learning can be uninteresting and dull. That’s because it lacks the social aspect that these individuals thrive on. To appeal to this growing portion of your training audience, incorporate social tools into your training. These can be interactive bulletin boards, virtual communities, interaction with experts on the subject, or any number of other methods for social interaction.
Divide your eLearning into chunks. Creating smaller and more easily consumed chunks within your lessons can also be a way to create more participation among your audience. This serves a number of benefits to learners. First, it makes the lesson seem more manageable and easy to accomplish. Second, it allows them to take parts of the training during short periods of down time rather than trying to find 2 or 3 hours in their busy schedules. It also makes it easier to find and review certain portions they may need extra time with. Finally, it allows for very targeted assessments and knowledge checks of the individual concepts being taught, and to deliver immediate feedback on their answers.
Make it scenario-based. The use of real-world scenarios can bring even a dull topic to life. Try to imagine some type of eLearning compliance training that doesn’t put your audience to sleep after 5 minutes. But incorporating scenarios where the learners can not only relate to the lesson but see the real purpose behind it, this creates engagement. You can also incorporate examples, case studies and real-world results that emphasize the importance of compliance. Oh, and a little drama never hurt anything either.
Design for mobile. By making your eLearning lessons mobile-friendly, you actually encourage participation during off-hours. If a learner has the ability to participate in training on his or her mobile device whenever the opportunity presents itself, you’ve just removed one more learning obstacle.
Make your eLearning relevant. Last but certainly not least, your eLearning lessons must be relevant to the job performance of your learners. Training for the sake of training alone will not encourage participation. If your learning audience can see a benefit to them in taking this training, then your battle is half-won. Ways to make your training relevant include the tips presented above, and also by always keeping your audience in mind when designing your eLearning lessons.
Here at Designing Digitally, Inc. we’re experts at helping design eLearning courses that encourage the maximum level of participation among your learning audience. Let us know how we can help you to get the most from your eLearning initiatives, and help to grow your eLearning participation rates. We design custom eLearning courses that engage, entertain and enlighten learners.