The 20 something workforce typically is heavily into some form of online activity or the other and needs no special orientation to online learning. At best, they demand an equally engaging and entertaining experience from it as they do from their various online activities such as gaming, blogging, surfing and the use of social media. Fair enough. But how do you tackle a target audience that may be slightly less tech-savvy or whose daily work does not involve working on computers and hence they feel hesitant about using them? It’s not just learners who may be averse to eLearning, it could be a lot of different groups of people within your organization who need to be oriented to this medium.
The need to arrange for orientation programs for various people involved in the eLearning initiative could be easily overlooked when planning an eLearning solution. The first step is to recognize that this is a legitimate need – for learners, for instructors who might be involved in live eLearning classes, for top leadership to see how powerful this medium is, for training departments to get a feel of the benefits of this mode and how they complement their regular face-to-face training sessions and maybe even for you as a learning practitioner to remember why you are doing this in the first place!
The next step is to begin to take small steps to address it so that by the time the eLearning is actually rolled out; a lot of resistance to this mode from various quarters is reduced. To begin with, you could plan to introduce eLearning in a classroom situation – except that learners do not start taking the course individually, but get acquainted with it through the instructor taking them through a highly interesting, engaging course projected on the screen, pausing and eliciting feedback at important points in the course or to get the audience to appreciate any powerful or unique way of presenting content. A couple of years back, I had the privilege of conducting an eLearning workshop for the Distance Education department of a leading Central Institute that wanted to take the eLearning route. I still remember how the slightly older faculty came alive after seeing a demo of an engaging course and what was possible with this medium. This made them more inclined to try switching to this medium (they were slightly skeptical and reluctant to go in for eLearning initially). Concrete ways in which the Institute supported their future transition into eLearning was to arrange for new systems and the use of highly interactive CDs with interesting topics of general interest. Similar tactics, I believe, would also work in organizations that had a workforce that didn’t use computers on an everyday basis such as shop floor employees in the manufacturing worldor supervisors in a pharmaceutical company etc.
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We all know the e-learning industry is full of acronyms. Even the word e-learning itself is the shorthand for electronic learning. As an e-learning professional, it is important to be familiar with various acronyms used in the field of e-learning. Here, I would like to share some acronyms that are commonly used in e-learning.
E-learning is increasingly used by organizations as online courses are effective, affordable and can be accessed anytime, anywhere. But, many organizations are not able to realize these benefits offered by the online training medium due to a serious problem – high dropout rates.
Day-by-day, the demand for rapid e-learning is increasing, and so, everyone is using rapid authoring tools to develop online courses. There are many authoring tools available in the market but a few became very popular. Most of our customers and prospects prefer Articulate Storyline to other rapid authoring tools such as Captivate and Lectora. Developing courses in Storyline is very easy, and the tool offers a lot of flexibility to customize the features or look and feel of the online course.
When it comes to mobile learning, HTML5 with responsive design is required to provide the best learning experience on mobiles, especially on smart-phones with small screens. Courses developed in Storyline and Lectora work fine on mobile devices such as iPads and other tablets, but it is difficult to view them in smart-phones. Captivate has a responsive design feature. So, we must choose it if we need to develop courses for all mobile devices. Captivate is not very intuitive and flexible to develop customized features. We can also build mobile- compatible courses using manual coding but it is time-consuming and expensive.
Recently, I read the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design” and in it, I saw the great news for which I was waiting for a while. I thought I should share it with you all. The developers of Articulate Storyline, Lectora Inspire, Lectora Online and other authoring tools are in the process of adding responsive design feature by the end of 2015.
Here is some information from the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design”.
|Scales to multiple screen sizes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Responsive design features||Coming by end of 2015||Yes||Coming by end of 2015|
2016 will be a watershed year for mobile learning as all courses may be made compatible to all mobile devices. Storyline may become the first choice to develop e-learning or m-learning courses because of its intuitiveness. This may force all learning management systems to be compatible with mobile devices. MOODLE is ahead in this regard, and it has a responsive design feature and works on all the mobile devices.
Hope you find this post useful. Do share your views.
Despite today’s technology and a connected world, classroom training is still an effective method to impart training to all employees. But, instructor-led teaching may not be appropriate for all training needs. Suppose there is a requirement for an organisation to train its employees spread across the globe, on a particular product, in a month’s time, classroom training will not serve the purpose. Here, e-learning serves as a good option to train employees, at comparatively lower costs, within a given schedule. Due to improvements in reliability and speed, converting classroom training materials into online courses has become a justified and cost-effective opportunity.
In my previous blogs, I have discussed about the importance of instructional design strategy and visual design strategy, the two main elements of e-learning in terms of design approach. In this blog, I will discuss about the significance of audio and audio strategy.
Every organization has to follow a set of laws which govern their sector in the country they operate. So, it needs to ensure that the employees are effectively trained on these rules to avoid compliance issues. Traditionally, this was done through face-to-face training in an engaging manner. But, with organizations expanding globally and the need for constant training, companies started using e-learning to quickly reach their global employees.
E-Learning is gradually replacing the classroom training format, worldwide. 41.7 % of fortune 500 companies are using e-learning tools for online training (E-learning Magazine 2013).
Online courses need to be engaging and interactive because they are self-paced i.e. an instructor is not present to deliver the courses.
Content comprehension is an important step in the e-learning development process. It broadly includes identification of relevant content and its separation from irrelevant content and arranging it in a proper manner. It enables instructional designers (IDs) to ensure that topics ‘flow’ in a logical sequence. It also helps IDs to find gaps in the content. If performed effectively, it will help you understand the subject-matter of the course better, and you will be able to present the content in an easily understandable manner.
IPad – a device that has revolutionized the corporate world. According to the Mac Observer, 94% of Fortune 500 companies are either testing or using this device from Apple. The widespread usage of iPads has resulted in the opening of new vistas in online training. No longer were learners required to carry “heavy” laptops or remain confined to their desks. People could conveniently go through online courses on these devices. Indeed, these devices have truly made learning anytime, anywhere.
When it comes to training, most organizations have a need for product training. Be it manufacturing, pharmaceutical, electronics or finance, product training needs to be imparted by companies in all industries. So, how does one cater to a single form of training for such different segments? In this post, we will look at a few effective e-learning design strategies that are best suited for product training across various industries.