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What Are The 4 M’s that Shape Effective Learning in Online Courses

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What Are The 4 M's that Shape  Effective Learning in Online Courses

We always talk about designing our e-Learning courses putting ourselves in the learners’ shoe. But do you think that the courses we design are really effective? Do they really help the learner perform effectively? What should we do to make these courses effective?

As mentioned by Michael Allen in his book ‘Leaving ADDIE for SAM,’ any learning event, regardless of the delivery platform, must have some fundamental characteristics that make learning effective. In this blog, I would like to summarize those fundamental characteristics.


A learner can link his existing knowledge and skills with the learning event only when it is meaningful. So, the instructions in the course should be beached on the existing knowledge of the learner. Any learning event is meaningful when the learner is able to recognize that his or her existing skills are not enough in certain conditions. Learners should also be able to know the jobs that they will be able to execute after this learning event. Relating the learning to the real-life experiences of the learner can help you make the learning event more meaningful.


A learning event is of no use if it does not help a learner remember the learning when needed to perform. Memorable learning events make sure that learners remember the learning and apply the learning efficiently whenever needed. There are many useful ways to make learning events memorable, such as usage of mnemonics.


Motivated peoples can create wonders but the motivational levels are very fluid. These levels can be easily pushed downward, but it takes a lot of effort to push them upward. You should try to make your instructions motivating by adding challenging activities. But you should not make them too hard or complicated as motivational levels can be easily pushed downward.

Measurable output

The main goal of any learning event is about enhancing and performing one’s skills effectively. All your efforts are of no use if the learner has not been able to perform after the learning event. So, learning events that do not provide measurable output are ineffective.

These might seem to be very minor aspects and we tend to overlook these at times. But these minor characteristics creates effective learning events, which serve your purpose.

So, the concluding line would only say “Any learning event must be Meaningful, Memorable, and Motivational to provide Measurable output.”

Hope you find this blog interesting and helpful. Please share your thoughts through your valuable comments.

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