eLearning is on the up and up

In a world where change is the only constant, it’s seemingly impossible to keep up. Continued demands from clients, staff, or suppliers makes for a full inbox, a relentless stream of information, and no logical way to filter any of it.

At Clarity International, we remedy this by staying focussed on our key segments, and true to our beliefs; helping our clients provide the most engaging opportunities possible in the field of digital learning.

It’s undeniable that eLearning is transforming at a mindboggling pace. Last year’s “what’s new” is this year’s “that’s old”, and the eLearning trends in the realm of VR make training looks like something out of a science fiction film. But, if you zoom out just a little bit, it can bring a few trends into focus. By highlighting those areas, we can see a clear, and exciting, picture begin to take place.

I blend, therefore I learn

Blended education. Flipped classroom. Hybrid education. Call it what you will, but the definition of blended learning is easy to grasp – it combines online learning and face-to-face training to get the best of both worlds.

Training managers are still getting to grips with blended learning pros and cons. Some think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, others think it’s a gamble. Even if you’re not a fan, it’s reopened the discussion on how to train people better, and that’s a good thing. The arrival of blended learning has forced us to consider the place of technology in the classroom.

What’s what?

But it’s more than just using computers in the learning environment. In addition to being an excellent way to ensure you’re covering different learning styles, hybrid learning can provide personalised training experiences, 24/7 access to training resources, allow for self-paced learning to reduce stress and increase levels of engagement and retention, all while tracking progress and completion rates in your LMS.

Although learners need a prior level of basic technical knowledge and the willingness to maintain the necessary level of progress through the course content, a bit of coaching in advance is an effective cure, and this is where the “old-school” teachers can be of comfort to many leaners.

Once in a while, it’s nice to have a “real person” come to you to give more detailed explanations, tips on how to get started or move forward, or just a pat on the back and an encouraging word to keep you on track.

It’s all fun and games

Life is serious enough, we might as well make the important stuff fun. We can’t say enough about the way the gamification has changed the learning that we design, and a day doesn’t go by when we’re not approached by prospective and existing clients to help them implement a gamified solution.

It’s a truly exciting step with an endless number of options. The basic premise of gamification is to add game elements such as leaderboards, badges, and achievements to non-game settings to motivate learners and engage them in the training they are undertaking.

You’ve got the power

Gamification is an extremely powerful tool that improves a learner’s skills and problem-solving capabilities. It’s an attention-grabbing experience that builds learner motivation to start, continue, and finish their training. But, like everything, it needs to be set up the right way.

Our first questions to clients looking to embark on a gamification journey needs to be, “What is it that you wish to achieve? 100% participation? Measurable ROI improvement? Something else?” If there is no pre-defined metrics, it becomes difficult to measure success after implementation.

Once a strategy is in place and understood, it’s essential that you do a dry run with a small beta group. List their observations and make adjustments to the game before releasing it on a large scale. Your larger learning audience may find bugs even after the pilot, but issues will be minimal.

Deployment of learning analytics

The biggest problem with big data is the big pile of information that requires a big amount of effort to sift through. This data can be tracked, analysed, and studied to determine trends, patterns, correlations and insights about learner behaviour.

Learners provide information when accessing a course. With this, course providers have access to a ton of data they can use to discover more about their learners. They may learn what time employees are choosing to study or how long they study before taking a break.

These insights can uncover which areas they are struggling with, or which sections they visit the most allowing training managers to tweak their content and make it more effective. For example, if employees are accessing most of the training materials during lunch breaks, then they may consider keeping training to a maximum of 20-30 minutes to accommodate these shorter study sessions. Or, if they discovered more people are accessing the materials through mobile devices, they would ensure all courses are responsive.

The future starts today

The key to these trends is they allow businesses to integrate learning more firmly into the culture of any organisation and directly impact business performance. At Clarity International, we’re passionate about the way that new technologies and training design can allow for more effective learning retention, improve employee engagement in the learning process, and allow businesses to capture solid data that identify the bottom-line impact of learning.

You can find out more about our work in Digital Learning by checking out some of the work we’ve done with Amdocs, NHS, and BT in our Case Studies.