There has been an upsurge in the companies learning needs. But it’s not enough to offer e-learning courses. Companies must also know how to make employees retain them.
Whatever has been learnt in an elearning course must be imbibed by the learners. For this, they must be sent tasks which involve repetition.
For example, multimedia has an impact on the human mind. It’s true that people remember images and videos more easily than text. In fact, animation can explain the most complicated of matters to human beings.
The same concept applies to quizzes where the learner can apply his knowledge and improve, and this way, he recalls the knowledge.
Techniques to ensure knowledge retention:
Active learning involves ensuring that the learners discuss with the trainer. It’s like holding classroom sessions with the trainer when the elearning is over.
There the trainer can ask questions from the learners, like giving them case studies to solve. The active learning approach is crucial because it involves both parties, i.e. the teacher and the learners.
If the learners are facing problems with whatever they have learned, they can ask the trainer about them. The active learning sessions can take place until the learner is fully clear about the concept. They can involve a single session or several sessions.
Use of micro learning:
The elearning course must be designed keeping in mind that the energy levels of the learners are not high after working at the job. Hence when at the end of the day, the learners log on to their PCs, they must go through a well-designed and crisp course. Whatever the course is, it should contain only relevant information so that the learner does not end up watching useless information. So instead of a long course, divide it into smaller modules.
The course must consist of micro-learning modules such as brief videos which learners can watch and understand easily. Whenever the course is too much lengthy, learners don’t have time for it and can’t even remember it. For example, a course with longer modules containing impertinent information can cause cognitive overload. Apart from small videos, some portions can be managed through podcasts also.
The learners must also get a chance to reflect on the information. Reflective learning is also crucial to ensure that the learners don’t forget much. Hence classroom sessions are important where the learners can be asked to question each other so that everyone recalls the concerned information. The students also get to know what information they are unable to recall or apply and hence need a revision of the same topic.
For the same purpose, it’s also necessary that the eLearning vendor includes a quiz after every module. Quizzes in an elearning course are a better way to make learners retain information than summative assessments because it makes sure that the learners remember just the relevant portions. When the learners can’t score passing marks on a quiz, they must review the module repeatedly. If the learners commit a mistake in a quiz, they need to go through the same material. When students cannot use their learning to solve the problem, this can be done by the teacher to ensure that they understand the material better.
Spaced repetition is a useful technique in the case of eLearning because it ensures that the learners can easily remember concepts taught in a course. This is done through flashcards. The company can get such cards based games. In such games, the learners are shown flashcards which have difficult concepts frequently but less tough concepts only randomly. This ensures that the learners can retain the intricate concepts.
Use of stories:
Learner retention can be improved when a story is told to them before a concept so that they can relate to it. It’s better if managers tell such anecdotes because they know the real-world situations of the jobs where such knowledge can be applied.
The e-learning courses must be interspersed with stories where simulations are shown to employees about the course.
Self-paced learning is not an easy task. It’s important that the learners are guided about how to manage time so that it does not take a toll on their health because they are managing their job along with the course. Hence the e-learning course must be designed properly because if it’s not, the learner has to grasp extra knowledge, which he does not require for performance at his job.