Role of E-learning in the Learning Cycle

Role of E-learning in the Learning Cycle

As we are all aware, the learning cycle consists of review, learning, application and adaptation. All these elements are essential for effective learning, and an effective eLearning course must address each of these to deliver successful teaching and complete the learning cycle.

In this blog, we will see how these elements can be incorporated in an eLearning course in simple, easy ways with an emphasis on the review phase.

1. Review

Bridging the gap between the known and the unknown is the first step of effective learning. Starting a new topic out of the blue can be overwhelming to learners and may provoke them to give up right at the outset.

Hence, it is a good practice to give them an idea of how the current knowledge is related to their existing knowledge. They should be told how the new knowledge fits in and where it takes off from, in relation to their prior knowledge.

This can be done in numerous, creative ways, including but not limited to:

  • Asking Do You Know/Can You Recall questions – these can be multiple/single select questions which test leaners on their prior knowledge. The feedback to their answers can be used to emphasize where and how the current learning is relevant and thus introduce the new topic.
  • Proving a recap of prior knowledge – if part of a curriculum, the learning of previous topics can be summarized succinctly to aid recall and mention where/how the new learning fits.
  • Presenting interesting facts – for general topics related facts/statistics can be provided to ease the way to the actual learning.
  • Proving games to bridge the gap – learners can be presented simple, exciting games such as crossword/jigsaw puzzles to help garner interest in the upcoming teaching.
  • Asking icebreaking questions – ask learners specific questions about what is taught in the course and pique their interest levels. This makes them receptive to the teaching.

The main intent is to help learners relate and place the current knowledge in the context of their prior knowledge.

Remember, first impressions are often the best and leave an indelible mark in our memories. Hence, at the very outset, ensure that your eLearning course caters to the learners’ sensibilities and provides them a clear picture of what the course is about, how it fits in with their prior knowledge, and how it addresses their learning needs.

2. Learning

Learning is the crux of the course and eLearning provides a plethora of options to present the teaching in interesting, engaging ways. There are a wide range of authoring tools which help develop eLearning courses which will appeal to the various kinds of learners – audio, visual, and kinesthetic.

The course conveys the actual learning to learners and forms the backbone of the learning cycle. It also requires a major share of the development time, effort, and resources, and is under the direct control of the course developer; albeit subject to few constraints.

3. Application

Learners should be presented opportunities to apply the knowledge in real-life situations, so that they hone their skills and become ready to face such challenges in the real world and resolve them successfully. This is the main aim and intent of teaching.

Again, eLearning provides a variety of options such as case studies, scenarios, etc. to help accomplish this.

4. Adaptation

This step takes places at the workplace, and is often, outside the purview of an eLearning course. But it depends directly on the success of the eLearning course in terms of imparting knowledge and equipping learners with the requisite skills.

Still, eLearning can help in a small way here by providing job-aids, contact details of Subject Matter Experts, discussion forums, etc. to let learners know what to do/whom to contact in case of doubts or emergencies.

I am sure you now have an idea of how this versatile tool called eLearning addresses all aspects of the learning cycle and provides a comprehensive learning solution.

Try it out and experience its benefits!!!

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