Learner engagement is vital to achieve the desired objectives of an eLearning course. It enables learners to acquire skills, gain knowledge and enhance their performance. However, making the new-age learners engaged with an eLearning course might not be very easy.
New-age learners like to gain control over their learning and expect to see improvement in their performance after completion of the eLearning course. Therefore, effective elements need to be incorporated in eLearning courses to improve learner engagement.
Let us see what these effective elements are:
Videos, Graphics, Audio and Various Other Media Elements
Embedding of various multimedia elements such as videos, audio, graphics, animations, etc., gives new value to the learning content. These media elements are powerful enough to grab learners’ attention and enable them to remember the concepts and ideas for a longer period of time.
Let us consider the example of, ‘safety training’, where learners have to be taught some tips on safety and how to effortlessly lift weights; instead of communicating this information only through text, a short video or slides with animated characters lifting weights can effectively convey and show the safe ways of weight lifting.
Interactivities and Opportunities of Discovery and Exploration
Embedding interactivities in eLearning courses such as Click On Tabs, Puzzles, Hotspots, Roll Overs, Drag And Drop, Adventure Games, Slide Shows, Strategy Games, etc., could allow learners to explore, discover, try, practice and perform various tasks. This aspect of learning can largely engage learners and also help them gain mastery over the core concepts of an eLearning course.
Here, we can consider an example of a simulation related to the assembling of computer parts, where a learner is provided with the freedom of watching the whole process of assembling computer parts as well as trying to perform the process by following the given steps in the simulation. Don’t you feel this can engage the learner? These elements in an eLearning course can be helpful in developing problem-solving skills and cognitive skills in employees so that they can perform under challenging situations.
Additionally, interactivities in eLearning course can highly engage kinesthetic learners who learn through trying and doing tasks or activities.
What happens when somebody tells us a story that reflects real-life situations? We immediately get connected with the subject and start relating ourselves with one of the characters of the story. We feel emotional and a kind of sensitivity is added to the whole process, particularly if the events or incidents covered in the story are relevant to our day-to-day life experiences.
Such is the impact of stories in our lives that they are even used in eLearning for engaging people with the learning content. In eLearning, storytelling can be used to describe a case study, a scenario or a simulation. For better results, proper narratives can be also added to storyline to engage learners.
Case studies can be an easy and effective medium of explaining the concepts and principles of any subject. As case studies demonstrate real-life events and the ways how people actually dealt with those events, they can have a high impact on learners.
Learners’ engagement can be easily observed when case studies are relevant with the subject. This can instantly connect learners with the subject and allow them to analyze over the events of the subject. These case studies can help learners develop understanding about problems and solutions of various cases.
So we have seen how the above-mentioned elements in eLearning can make learners become engaged with the eLearning course. However, some elements may engage the learners more, some less. Also, I am sure there can be more effective elements in eLearning courses to engage learners. What do you think? If you have any views regarding this, please do share. We would really appreciate to hear from you.