iPad is an advanced mobile device that offers easy and quick access to information – even to toddlers! They now have iPads specifically targeting toddlers. So, it is not surprising that this device has changed the learning dimension not just at home but also in the corporate world. If a toddler can use an iPad to learn, why not an employee in a corporate organization?
According to Mac Observer, 94 percent of Fortune 500 companies test or deploy iPads for their businesses. A research report states that 70% of global organizations use iPads. iPads have transformed learning and revolutionized the corporate world. Learners no longer are confined to their desks or laptops to undergo training.
They can access online course anytime, anywhere if they have iPads. iPads have provided new options and opportunities for e-learning delivery. Learning content can be presented in multiple formats that suit the unique capabilities of iPads. Here are some ideas.
Exploring e-learning using iPads:
E-books: E-books are one of the learning resources that organizations can use to support learners – with knowledge right when they need it. They are particularly useful for dissemination of product information, processes, user manual and so on. Digital e-books can include interactive audio and video elements, and iPad is an excellent option that can be used by sales people or service engineers who are working on the field and do not have access to a desktop or a bulky laptop. Using the iPad, they can refer to the information needed easily anytime anywhere. iPads have a screen size that is not too small as in smartphones but at the same time give excellent experience to view and access audio, video, interactive elements and animations.
Presentations: You can include media-rich presentations as part of product catalogs or brochures that sales personnel can carry to impress prospective clients. They can also be part of training material for new hires who could explore and get to know the organization on their own through these engaging modules. Employees can be given the option to access interactive learning content via iPads allowing them the flexibility and freedom to learn from anywhere, yet not compromise on the quality of the learning experience.
Gamified learning: Games are increasingly being included in online learning. They are known to reduce training stress and facilitate higher learner interaction. IPads offer a unique experience when playing games because of the multi-touch screen options. Games can be created exclusively keeping in mind the interface and touch capabilities of iPads. They are much more user friendly then gadgets that require clicking using mouse.
Simulations: Due to the unique nature of iPads, simulations can be created better. You might have seen a kid holding the iPad and directing it is a car steering wheel and playing a racing game. Such simulations can be created for organizational training as well with virtual workplace environment. These can be useful strategies to be adopted during safety training, process training or new employee orientation.
Videos: Videos are useful to demonstrate and train employees on various products/procedures, induction training and so on. Employees can access short videos on a given subject easily through iPads. The high resolution LED backlight large screen and the in-built speakers ensuring high-quality sound enhance the viewing experience of learners.
E-learning modules: If e-learning modules have to be accessed via iPads, they need to be responsive to the device. This means that the unique interactive elements and hardware capabilities of iPads have to be taken into consideration right at the time of designing e-learning modules. Touch capabilities and touch areas have to be demarcated, and screen orientation has to be taken into consideration when designing the graphic user interface of the course.
Tips to consider while developing courses on iPads:
If you need to develop online courses for iPads, you can consider tools such as Lectora, Articulate Storyline, Adobe Captivate, and iSpring. Whatever tool you may use to develop iPad compatible learning resources, you need to keep in mind the following points:
- Page size: You need to check if the content size is suitable for delivery on the iPad screen. Font: Common fonts supported by browsers such as safari in iPads such as Verdana, Arial, Georgia and so on may be used.
- Flash to HTML5: Files should be converted to HTML5 as iPad does not support Flash files. Conversion is easy as converters are available to transform SWFs to HTML5.
- Audio: Audio should be in the MP3 format before publishing the course for easy access through iPads.
- Video: Videos should be in the MP4 format for easy access through iPads.
- Navigation: Navigation and input controls should be appropriately sized to be easily controlled by touch options.
- Data encryption along with login credentials may be used to secure critical information of the company when a web-based training (WBT) is provided using iPads.
iPad is the ideal device to deliver an e-learning course effectively, particularly for employees who spend time away from their desks and cannot devote a large chunk of time to training. They enable employees to enjoy the same quality of learning as on desktops and in some cases, gives enhanced learner experience, but allow them to work their way around the limitations of time and space.