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The Importance of Engagement in Elearning

By Sep Barkhodaee
Published on August 18, 2014

When students’ minds start drifting in a face-to-face class, it’s fairly obvious. They spend several minutes with their heads down, whether they’re texting a friend or dozing off, and their participation in discussions becomes non-existent. In such a setting, teachers can try to call attention back to the topic at hand or at least note that some people aren’t engaged.

Workers are essentially students when they’re training and learning new skills. With elearning software, there isn’t a clear way to determine the level of engagement. There may be assessments at the end of an online course that will reveal what the students have learned, but you can’t manually keep them on track during the actual lesson.

According to Business 2 Community, online training software loses its effectiveness and value if the viewers aren’t engaged. To ensure the program you develop benefits your company, here are a few tips to consider.

 

Advice for a successful elearning program
Business 2 Community recommended beginning with pilot programs and test versions of your software to gauge how engaging it is. Your company’s methods for reviewing and rewarding employees should match the progression for the course, including credit for professional development. Any metrics that provide insight into the level of engagement spurred by the program will be more useful if you link them to related goals and objectives.

Additionally, it was suggested that management from all levels encourage learning and put value in continued education for employees. From the CEO to direct supervisors, those higher up in the company should be fostering professional growth for staff members in order to retain them. According to Business 2 Community, putting their development on pause isn’t going to convince them to stay with your company.

Four main characteristics can make or break your online training software, according to The ELearning Guild. However, these are factors that you have to observe in your own capacity because you aren’t able to physically see the people who are learning. It’s obvious when someone isn’t paying attention in a class, but impossible to tell when that person is learning online. Programs should have engaging content, a stress-free interface, media and digital design plus an interactive portion, such as games.

 

E-Learning engagement

 

Abstain from distracting or boring content
On the other side of the coin, eLearning Industry brainstormed a few qualities that aren’t as desirable in online training software. It stated that headings and subheadings accurately convey what the viewer is going to be learning about and everything you include in content and design should be relevant to the topic. Additionally, all of the information should be kept up-to-date, especially in rapidly developing industries. Try to steer clear of corporate jargon or buzzwords that employees typically hear in company-wide meetings.

The software design and layout should be simple and free of distractions. The goal of everything, including content and design work, is to the keep viewers interested. Don’t forget that the human attention span is consistently shrinking as younger generations require and value multitasking talent. Keep this in mind when you’re arranging information to avoid wandering minds while people take your course.

eLearn magazine determined that the content of a course can be engaging without the program providing the viewer with necessary and useful information. However, the different ways learners absorb information can make a big difference in how engaged they are. Once your learning management system has been bolstered by these steps, you can add aspects that make it more entertaining for employees. These additional aspects may improve the quality of interaction and secure the notion that employees are truly learning online, not spending time on busy work.


One response to “The Importance of Engagement in Elearning”

  1. […] Engagement isn’t the same as satisfaction. Satisfaction in a training context means that the employee feels the exercise was adequate for their learning needs. A satisfied trainee feels they learned what they needed to keep the powers-that-be off their back. It doesn’t tell an organization much about whether the trainee actually believes in, supports and is willing to promote the new policy or procedure. Introducing new production quotas without getting employees on side can lead efforts to boost productivity to have the opposite effect. Engagement is about minimizing resistance to change by helping employees see how they fit into efforts to make the organization better. You can follow these easy steps to make sure that your trainees end up working for change, rather than against it. […]

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