Monthly Archives: September 2016

eLearning: Three Levels of Action that Achieve Results!

At Illumen Group, we are often asked why our solutions go beyond the typical eLearning experience.

The answer is as simple as three words. Engage. Educate. Prepare. But this simple answer isn’t necessarily easy to implement.

Engage.

By now, nearly every eLearner everywhere has been exposed to many hour of computer gaming. Interactivity for the interactivity’s sake might keep learners busy “doing” things, but are they really “connecting” with the intent of the program? According to cognitive studies, learning best occurs when the brain is in a heightened state of perception. This takes place not when learners are busy with interactivity, but rather when they are engaged with learning. There are two major ways in which engagement can best be accomplished:

  • When the aesthetics (Look and Feel) is viscerally appealing and inviting. The right “look and feel” almost compels the learner to grab the mouse and participate.
  • When the information is relevant. The learner knows they are participating in a “learning” experience. In this context they will only be engaged by data that relates to their organization and the role they perform.

Educate.

Once the learner is engaged, we can begin to address this next level. Educate doesn’t mean the sharing of as much info as possible in the time allotted, but rather a systematic sharing of knowledge and skills. This means organizing data in bite-size chunks that build into larger concepts. The data should always be appropriate and relatable; appropriate to an eLearning environment, and relatable to objectives that will improve their performance.        

Prepare.

Although education can be enough for some eLearning goals, the real return on investment comes when eLearning actual prepares the learner to do something differently after the course is over. Here is where the concept of simulating actual […]

eLearning: Three Levels of Action that Achieve Results!2018-06-07T13:45:12+00:00

The eLearning Game Changer: Simulations

Today, training new employees or keeping existing employees’ skills up to date in a quickly changing world can be a daunting task.

Due to rapid advancements in technology, it’s challenging for employees to learn new skills, techniques or processes in short time frames. Application training can require practice on equipment or software not readily available, yet the learners are expected to know their way around the application, regardless. Early computer based training involved converting people’s classroom training into eLearning. But this misses the real potential computer training has to offer.

A simulation can best address this gap in learning. Simulations have been used for years with aviation and healthcare, but now they are gaining momentum as a game changer for other application training. They have proven effective for sales, safety and any high-risk environment.

Simulations for application training prepare the learner more thoroughly, allowing proficiency before working on the actual equipment or process, while building learner confidence. They can develop a level of experience in thought processes, habits, decisions making, etc. that would previously take much longer; sometimes through costly trial and error.

They can also vary greatly based on need, timelines and budget.  Simulations can be high tech, or as a simple role play or game. They can be comprised of realistic 2D and 3D images, redesigned video or simple graphics.

While simulations are not ideal for every situation, they are recommended when the training is hands-on and skill based. Whenever you have to train on a new or changing technique or process, the simulation is your perfect tool!

The eLearning Game Changer: Simulations2018-06-07T13:45:12+00:00

eLearning: Interactivity vs. Engagement

First let’s establish a few definitions. Interactivity means doing, while engagement means connecting. Just because a course is interactive, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s engaging. Interactivity is fine, but providing learner value through connection is more important than providing them with a certificate. Trying to embed unnecessary interactivity can also drive up learner seat time as well as investment in your resources and your budget.

So what makes an interactivity engaging? It should-

  • Allow learners to understand how the interaction leads to relevant outcomes.
  • Come at the moment of need.
  • Cause learners to think about solving an authentic, relevant challenge that applies to their reality.
  • Motivate learners to act once the course is completed.

Put it all together and an engaging eLearning program can be a highly relevant, motivating and actionable experience, with minimal observable interactivity. And remember, engagement doesn’t need to be overt (think about your favorite book or movie).

So instead of worrying about whether the learner has enough to do during the course, perhaps you should change your focus to helping learners want to change because they were engaged by the course!

Hopefully you found this short article engaging and are motivated to contact me and “engage” in this topic further.

eLearning: Interactivity vs. Engagement2018-06-07T13:45:12+00:00

Looking at the eLearning Crystal Ball for 2017!

According to eLearning Industries, there are several trends to look for as we approach 2017. The future of learning definitely lies outside traditional classrooms with eLearning and distance learning gaining increasing momentum. The most notable trends include the following.

  • The Simulation. Once reserved for addressing aviation and health care, is gaining momentum as a game changer for other application training. They have proven effective for sales, safety or any high-risk environment. They can be high tech, or as a simple role play or game. They can be comprised of realistic 2D and 3D images, redesigned video or simple graphics.
  • Mobile Learning or mLearning is designed for the next generation that is always on the go. It is not just eLearning on a mobile device. The material is specifically rendered and developed for mobile learning, requiring skillful design.
  • Gamification makes learning fun and was one of the hottest trends in 2016. It can be very useful in improving learner innovation and problem solving.
  • Microlearning utilizes mini content bytes (e.g. 5 minutes videos) made available to the learner to work into their busy schedule. It is typically accessed on multiple devices. It’s very popular with corporate clients.
  • Big Data collected through the LMS allows developers to improve and modify eLearning courses, content, and material by delving deep into the learning behaviors and preferences of the users. It provides robust statistics and numbers that allow the developers to tailor and customize learning activities according to the consumer needs and also adjust the organization’s eLearning strategy as required.
  • Cloud-Based eLearning Systems have encouraged LMS’ and authoring tools switch to cloud-based platforms. Cloud-based online training is easily accessible to employees and reduces training costs significantly Updating online training content and introducing new products and features is easy on Cloud and it also ensures advanced […]
Looking at the eLearning Crystal Ball for 2017!2018-06-07T13:45:12+00:00