Getting learners to enroll for a course is one thing; getting them to continue till the end is another. While learners sign up with vigor and enthusiasm, the motivation to complete the course may wane. In face-to-face classroom teaching it may be possible to gauge learners’ interest levels and implement instant modifications suited to the situation. This ‘privilege’ is missing when it comes to online learning. Courses need to be designed keeping in mind a diverse group of students, taking care to implement training methods which cater to the entire group.
Creative Content and Effective Execution – A Balancing Act
In eLearning, student retention may be a challenging task but not an impossible one. Technology has come a long way and eLearning developers, including instructional designers, graphic designers and developers can come together to make the best use of technology and deliver effective and engaging learning content.
Student retention methods must be a fine blend of content and course execution; both factors being interdependent. Good content must be complemented by an equally good set of tools and designs and vice versa.
When it comes to content, the following can prove to be helpful in achieving desired results.
Clear learning objectives: Learning objectives of a course must always be defined in very crisp and clear words. This helps give the learner a precise idea of what to expect. There should be no room for ambiguity. Once defined, these learning objectives must have direct mappings in the course content to helps learners keep track of their learning. A vague learning objective will lead to a loss in interest and eventually dropping out of courses.
Bite size modules: Micro learning is a quick way to grasp chunks of knowledge. They suit the fast-paced life of today’s professionals and bite sized modules can be completed during commutes or between short breaks. Small chunks of knowledge are also easier to remember and retain for later application. They also help as revision pieces and prove helpful when wrapping up a module.
Immersive learning methods: Keeping up with emerging technology and to maintain a spirit of moving with the times, course content can be delivered using a mix of immersive learning methods like simulations, 3D demonstrations and game-based activities. As immersive learning methods are highly interactive in nature, they help encourage participation and promote the idea of ‘learning by doing’.
A fine content collection will only prove to be engaging and effective if executed with care and consideration.
Easily accessible: The use of easily available and accessible technology helps reach out to a wider audience. Take for example WebGL which makes highly interactive 3D virtual environments easily accessible from any browser. Making highly interactive content accessible from a simple browser will ensure unlimited reach due to the deep penetration of browser accessibility.
This 3D demonstration showing how to operate a Fire Extinguisher can be viewed on a simple browser, making it accessible on the simplest devices.
Platform adaptability: With the range of devices available and in use by users, platform adaptability becomes a crucial factor. Users may be using anything from a mobile phone to an elaborate desktop set up. As an eLearning content creator, it is wise to keep up with the times, or shall we say keep up with the learners’ needs.
Discussion forums: Connectivity is dynamic and can prove to be a significant tool in creating engaging sessions. Creating online communities for courses can encourage and enable learners to interact, exchange ideas, share content, post queries and engage in discussions, thereby helping maintain a level of interest in the learning process. The availability of a moderator on the forum can facilitate query resolutions and at the same time maintain a level of decorum.
Individuals from different backgrounds, with varied interests and differing learning abilities come together to form one group of students. They embark on a journey to gain knowledge and acquire skills for their betterment. As students they do their part by enrolling for the course. Henceforth, it is the job of the trainer to maintain that level of interest, give a boost to motivation levels and help propel these students towards course completion.
Contact Us to create engaging and immersive online learning content or to know more about our immersive architecture.