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When it comes to eLearning, there are a lot of myths going around about it and why it may not be a great delivery method for training. Well, we’re here to bust those myths and show you why eLearning is fantastic and could be a great option to deliver training to your students, whether you run a training company or offer internal training from a training department!
When it comes to teaching for different learning styles, you may not think that eLearning will work for all your students, because obviously, your students will represent lots of different learning styles in one group.
However, because eLearning gives you the ability to customise it with lots of different types of course content, it can be easy to make sure there is something for everyone or personalise eLearning courses completely to suit certain learning styles.
eLearning does usually mean sitting at your computer and working through a class at your own pace, but that doesn’t mean that students won’t be able to interact with each other during the learning process.
You can set up study groups either in person, via instant messenger, or through video conferencing to ensure that students can still talk to and support each other.
Another interaction worry with eLearning can be that students will have no interaction with teaching staff, and therefore if they have a problem or are struggling with something, they will have no support.
As with student interaction, it is really easy to set up and support student and teacher interaction. The easiest way to do this is to ensure that all students are given the instructor’s contact details, so they can get in touch with them whenever they need help.
As listed above, you could also use instant messenger or video conferencing to allow students some direct contact with the teaching staff. Or you could even set up a virtual instructor-led training (VILT) session periodically so the students will get some ‘face-to-face’ time with their teacher and get the chance to ask them any questions they might have.
If your students don’t spend any time in the classroom, and therefore no or limited time with instructors, you may think it will be hard to measure how students are interacting with the course content or how well they are doing.
Well if you have a powerful reporting system hooked up to your learning management system (LMS), then it’s really easy to pull any of the vital data you need to look at in just a few clicks! Read this blog post on vital data to report on from your LMS for more details!
You may think that eLearning is a more expensive option than traditional classroom-based learning simply because you will need to invest in technology and purchase the content for your courses. However, eLearning can actually save your training business money in a number of different ways!
eLearning has the potential to come across as more complicated than classroom-based sessions because there is technology involved, and students may assume you need to be super familiar with that technology to complete the course.
However, the truth is eLearning and using an LMS isn’t any more complicated than browsing the web, so if your students signed up to your eLearning course in the first place, they would be more than equipped to handle the eLearning itself.
If you have more complicated elements such as assessment submissions, you may wish to include further instructions to ensure everyone knows how to do things correctly.
If you choose to offer eLearning to your students, the thought of creating your own eLearning content may be the thing that puts you off. While you can create your own content, you can also buy off-the-shelf content to provide your students with all the information they need!
You may wish to move to custom content in the future, or for some specific courses, but if not, then off-the-shelf content is the perfect solution.
Students may have a misconception that eLearning moves too quickly for them to keep up with because there isn’t the chance to stop and ask an instructor a question, or if they have to finish the course in a certain timeframe.
However, eLearning is actually easier to adapt to your own pace than other forms of learning are. A topic may be covered in just a few screens as part of an eLearning course, but the student will then have the time to back over the content if they need to, as well as do any additional reading they wish to do to expand their knowledge on the subject. They will then be able to move on to the next topic or module when they feel ready, and not at a pace which is set by the rest of the class.
Even if the class had a deadline, students should still have plenty of time to work through the course at whatever pace suits them and still be able to finish everything with ease.
One of the huge benefits of eLearning is that students can work through the content in their own time, but this may lead to internal training students thinking that they need to complete the eLearning outside of work time.
This isn’t what is meant by ‘own time’ though. It simply means setting aside time during your normal workday to complete the learning at your own pace. Even though you have chosen to offer eLearning rather than classroom-based sessions, this doesn’t mean employees won’t have a learning time allowance during the week to complete their internal training. It just means that instead of pre-decided times for classroom sessions, they can split the time as they see fit, and learn at the time of day which suits them best.
eLearning is a great solution for a lot of different types of learning, but there are some sessions which you will feel will always work better as a classroom-based session. This could be things like practical sessions such as first aid training.
Instructors also still have a place in the eLearning world as well, as they can be there to provide student support and assist with assessments.
There is always the thought that if a teacher isn’t present at all times, then it can be easy for students to cheat on their assessments and examinations, so this may be a worry when it comes to eLearning.
To help combat this, you can do things like mix up the questions in your assessments, so they are not the same every time, and this will make it harder to prepare for final assessments. You could also ensure the final assessment is held under exam conditions by having everyone attend a shared location to complete it if this is possible.
Another way is to replace a quiz-style final assessment with something like an essay to ensure that students are producing their own work.
A lot of people may thing eLearning is boring because they have had a negative experience with a poorly-designed course in the past, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all!
eLearning can be just as exciting as any other type of learning; you just need to ensure you pick or design the right content for your students. You can mix in lots of different elements such as practical exercises, videos, quizzes, assessments, group sessions – pretty much anything you can think of to ensure it’s never boring!
eLearning also allows you to break up the learning into manageable chunks to ensure students are overwhelmed with too much information at once and switch off.
If you choose to offer some of your classes as eLearning, it doesn’t mean you can’t mix and match other types of learning and mix those in throughout the training as well.
As we mentioned above, you can book in VILT sessions so all your students and your instructors can meet together at the same time to discuss how things are going. You can also mix in classroom-based sessions if applicable to bring students together for things like practical sessions or assessments. Even if the bulk of your training is eLearning, you can mix in other types of learning for a more blended approach.
If you’re thinking about designing an eLearning course, it may be overwhelming if you think every element of your course has to have an interactive element to it for it to be considered eLearning. However, that’s not true, and while it is a feature you can make use of during your eLearning courses, there are just some topics that don’t need a high level of interaction for your students to learn about them.
You can simply include things like slides of text and videos which convey all the necessary information, without having to rely on creating interactive segments.
You may think that bringing in a new type of training into your offering will mean you’ll need to find another system to manage those courses, but if you’re an Administrate customer then you don’t need to worry! Not only does our training management system come with a built-in LMS, but it also allows you to set up eLearning and blended learning courses in the same way as any other course and manage them all from one central point!
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