Research on the forgetting curve shows that humans tend to halve their memory of newly earned knowledge in a matter of hours and days – retention rates are declining. According to studies, learners forget 50%-80% of acquired knowledge within 24 hours, and by 30 days they only retain about 2%-3% of it. So, we need to ensure learners retain the gained knowledge and reinforce it once they are back to the workplace. How do we achieve this?
‘Refresher Training’ is an excellent solution to fight the forgetting curve. It aims at the retention and reinforcement of formerly acquired skills and knowledge. In today’s fast-paced modern workplace, microlearning is one of the optimal methods to achieve refresher training.
This short-burst information nugget offers regular recall of knowledge in quick time through ‘push’ or ‘pull’ learning i.e., they are either provided by the organization at regular intervals, or learners take them as the requirement arises. Let’s see how microlearning helps in refresher training.
1. Performance Support
Imagine you provide your sales team an instructor-led training on a new product. Can you guarantee that your sales force will be able to retain this knowledge when they meet a customer a few weeks after taking the course?
This is the point where your employees will need the assistance of a quick tutorial to refresh their knowledge. Short and focused microlearning modules that are based on one learning objective will help employees reinforce product knowledge and better their performance.
In an alternate scenario, imagine you provided ERP training to your employees. When an employee needs to execute a task but does not remember how, they will obviously look for the simplest solution rather looking at their ILT notes or going back to the 30-minute e-learning course. Microlearning modules act as a performance support tool that is easily accessible and applicable exactly when required.
2. Easy Access through Mobile Devices
Microlearning modules are famous for their anytime, anywhere accessibility. The increased adoption of mobile learning has facilitated the acceptance of microlearning as a quick training solution to refresh knowledge. Microlearning solutions can be delivered across a variety of mobile devices such as iPads, tablets, and smartphones, making them accessible anytime anywhere for learners without interruption.
As the learner visits these microlearning modules, their knowledge is strengthened and transferred to long-term memory. In the long run, the learner will gradually get familiarized with the information shared through the microlearning nuggets and will be able to perform without any assistance.
3. Quick and Focused Access
It is always easy to grasp and retain snippets of information rather than huge blocks of content. Reinforcement of knowledge cannot be a long and complex process. Microlearning content is presented to learners in a way that is easy to read, comprehend, learn, and absorb. How?
While developing microlearning modules, the course content is chucked into multiple knowledge snippets, each conveying a single learning objective. This concentration on a single learning objective makes the process of learning and reinforcement easier.
For example, if you want to have a look at how your product is placed against competitors’ products, you can directly access the microlearning module which deals with that topic rather than going through the entire course, enabling more of a quick and focused access.
4. Varieties of Formats to Choose From
To make reinforcement training engaging, it is necessary to provide learners varieties of formats to choose from. Like the human brain absorbs every medium of instruction rather than just text, microlearning is not limited to the text format.
Microlearning modules are delivered in various formats such as videos, quizzes, games, blogs, podcasts, infographics, and more. The micro form of these training nuggets allows them to fit anywhere in the learning cycle for reinforcing knowledge.
5. Easy to Convey New Updates
Technology is majorly changing the way things get done across industries. How do you respond to this rapid growth? It is necessary to ensure employees evolve with changing trends. Small chunks of information in microlearning modules can be easily updated, thus reducing the overall turnaround time. As it does not take much time to update short modules, it adds value to your learners as they get access to the latest information.
Thomas J Wilson, the founder of IBM once said, “There is no saturation point in education.” Your organization might spend millions of dollars on training and development. However, there’ll always exist some knowledge that needs to be refreshed.
Refresher training boosts the self-confidence and morale of employees. It is well-worth to devote enough time for refresher training to increase their competency, which ultimately increases the organization’s competency. Microlearning modules add value to this process by curbing the forgetting curve and ensuring better retention and reinforcement.