Businesses all over the world are working to provide employees with hands-on training and practical skills. With more and more people working from home as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for motivational, practical online learning has increased. So, how do we help learners’ complete practical tasks in the safety of their own homes?
In this article, you will better understand what is, how it can benefit your employees and how it will keep learners focused and engaged. Let’s take a look at what you need to know about curriculum development and experiential learning strategies.
Staying Motivated with eLearning Content
What is Experiential Learning?
Simply put, experiential learning is learning by doing. Studies show that applying practical skills allows learners not only to take in more information but improve the quality of their work. This instructional strategy allows learners to apply their knowledge in real-life scenarios and be an active part of the learning process.
For example, a construction company might provide safety training by walking their learners through potential events, such as an earthquake, to help them problem solve and find options for a safer building design. Another example could be connecting employees with as opposed to teaching them strictly through a classroom setting. The key is knowing how to help learners benefit from this instructional strategy remotely.
Learner Engagement and Curriculum Development
Oftentimes when instructors assign practical tasks in an online environment, they haven’t gauged the difficulty of the task enough or thought about it in a remote setting. Creating an effective task is about finding out what learners know and examining the gaps in their knowledge.
Here are some guidelines for getting to know your learners better:
- Ask your students what their previous eLearning experiences have been like.
- Dedicate a module to the mastery of a particular skill if it is especially challenging and you anticipate learners might have problems with it.
- Start your course with a tangible learning objective, and ask your learners what their objectives are.
- Spread smaller tasks throughout the course. This will help learners take on the information more willingly.
Give Clear Instructions
Learners will feel more excited about taking your course if they understand what is expected of them. Try providing a couple of examples before each task and make sure that your learners know how they should prepare. This way, your audience will get an idea of what their final task will look like and will have a goal to work toward.
For example, if you are teaching a course on Photoshop, make sure your learners have the correct software and tools before beginning. Provide examples of works that meet your standards and explain why they are successful. When providing examples, make sure to include some common misunderstandings that you anticipate your learners might have based on their previous experiences.
Straightforward eLearning Design Development
Stay Focused on Timing
To help learners build the curriculum into their daily lives, it’s important to provide accurate estimations of how much time it should take a beginner to complete a certain module. Setting a time range, such as an hour to one hour and 30 minutes, will help include more people with different learning backgrounds.
Setting markers of progress will help learners take ownership of their work and stay motivated. If the work is more visual, consider showcasing projects through photographs and videos. Group chats on collaboration tools and cloud-based communication apps are a great way to involve the whole group during the critique and help learners feel more connected to their peers.
Try creating a group blog where learners can post their work, explain their progress and give comments to others. If the course is about something less tangible, such as meditation at the workplace, try conducting surveys and checking in with your learners weekly. Even in a remote setting, experiential learning is possible. The key is to motivate learners by giving them incentives to complete assignments, being clear with your expectations and encouraging them to ask questions.
By making your eLearning courses more practical, you can give your organization a competitive edge and help them stand out and appeal to a wider audience.