8 Elements that Modern Learners Expect in Online Training


8 Elements that Modern Learners Expect in Online Training

December 7, 2017

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8 Elements that Modern Learners Expect in Online Training

You need to keep your modern learners happy if you want to retain your top talent and reduce attrition rates. This includes online training programs that live up to expectations and personalize the L&D process. But what do today’s corporate learners long for when they click on that sign-in button? The following 8 online training activities and resources are now commonplace for modern learners.

1. Personalization

There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all online training program. Modern learners expect personalized online training resources that cater to their needs, and not a generic online training course that tries, and fails, to give everyone the information they’re looking for in an easily digestible format. The truth is that people learn in different ways and have different learning goals. As such, your organization must be able to provide them with relevant online training materials that factor in personal preferences and job duties. Include clickable eLearning course maps, individualized online training paths, and recommended online training resources based on past performance.

2. Microlearning Online Training Resources

Multitasking is a myth. The human brain cannot concentrate on more than one task at a time. That doesn’t stop modern learners from trying. They are busy and juggling multiple assignments at any given time, which means that they need quick and convenient online training activities. For example, microlearning online training resources that offer solutions to common challenges and focus on their areas for improvement. Here are a few bite-sized online training tools you may want to consider for modern learners:

a. Infographics

A blend of images and text that highlight trends or explore work-related tasks. Infographics should cover a specific topic or idea to prevent cognitive overload. For example, include 5 key points that address various aspects of the company dress code. Include high quality images, vibrant colours, and creative fonts to enhance the aesthetic appeal.

b. Podcasts

Ideally suited for visual learners, as well as those who are on the go. Each podcast features a new topic or tip that’s easily digestible. You can even create an entire podcast series to provide a more comprehensive overview of the subject matter. For instance, your sales podcast series consists of 20 episodes, and every installment highlights a unique sales technique or skill.

c. Video Demos

A great addition to product knowledge or task training. Video demos provide your modern learners with an example of favourable behaviours, which they can reproduce in the real world to achieve the desired outcomes. For example, how to safely operate a piece of heavy machinery in factory settings or showcase a new product for interested buyers on the sales floor.

3. Real-World Online Training Activities

Modern learners are not concerned with soaking up as much information as possible, but using the knowledge they’ve gathered to improve their lives and further their goals. This requires real-world online training activities that allow them to apply all that data stored in mental schemas, such as branching scenarios, online training simulations, case studies, and real-world examples. More importantly, these online training resources must deal with different contexts so that modern learners understand how to utilize skills in various situations.

4. Interactive Multimedia

eLearning experiences are more interactive and immersive than ever before. Thus, modern learners expect to see their fair share of dynamic multimedia. This includes podcasts, recorded online training webinars, games, and branching scenarios. Keep in mind that you can’t have too much of a good thing. Too much interactivity can lead to cognitive overload and may even compromise the accessibility of your online training course. For example, mobile learners are unable to participate in the branching scenario because it relies solely on audio and drag-and-drop interactions, but lacks text captions or subtitles.

5. Branded Online Training Content

Modern learners need to know that you stand behind your online training content and that it ties into your other online training initiatives. Branding elements make your online training course more credible and cohesive. Logos, colour palettes, images, and graphics should all convey your brand identity. Many Learning Management Systems now allow you to incorporate your branding with ease. That includes customizing the eLearning course layout and learner dashboards.

6. Mobile-Friendly Interface

A majority of your audience consider their smartphones a prized possession. So, it’s only natural that they rely on their devices to get all the information they need throughout the day. It’s their lifeline that connects them to friends, family, and all the just-in-time data they can handle. To keep up with the times, your online training course must be multiplatform-friendly so that everyone can access the online training content on their preferred platform.

7. Serious Games/Gamification

Today’s modern learners were raised during the gaming revolution, especially millennials and younger generations. Serious games are usually par-for-the-course, and they seize the opportunity to play their way through the online training process. This may include serious games that reinforce knowledge or game mechanics that transform the entire online training experience into a pursuit for the grand prize. It can be anything from earning enough points to skip a module or reaching the top of the leaderboard. Remember that modern learners are looking for purpose more than points. Their primary motivation is intrinsic, and they want to prove to themselves that they have what it takes.

8. Stress-Free eLearning Navigation

Not so much an online training activity or resource, but an eLearning course design must-have. Stress-free eLearning navigation allows modern learners to access online training materials quickly, with minimal distractions. They shouldn’t have to worry about broken links, lost navigation buttons, or confusing eLearning course maps.

Modern learners must also deal with a constant influx of information, which has its own benefits and drawbacks. While they have immediate access to online training resources, cognitive overwhelm is an ever-present danger. Fortunately, the aforementioned elements can help them focus on the online training materials and minimize external distractions.

Want to learn more on how to motivate modern learners into your online training course?

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