Across industries, employees are experiencing what it’s like to have their workload optimized by automation. Algorithms and AI are minimizing, or in some cases even eliminating, human input while at the same time achieving equal or better results in workplace tasks. Automation in eLearning is no different to this overall concept. All the general benefits of increased efficiency, optimization and output derived through automation also apply in eLearning environments.
This article takes a closer look at those benefits, to see how automation positions eLearning at the foremost edge of educational technology, and firmly on the wish list of educators and students alike.
Right now, automation in eLearning is mostly a case of behind-the-scenes code produced by LMS providers and app developers. Algorithms embedded into LMS platforms help educators to generate eLearning content, by drawing from previously inputted data to suggest options for future resources. For example, instead of going through the laborious process of creating lesson templates each time a training course is set up for a new class, automation can take over the role on behalf of educators, freeing them up to focus on lesson content. In fact, automation is likely to do a better job than educators when it comes to tasks that require large amounts of replication or administration, by ensuring that document content and layout remains consistent to a robotic degree of accuracy. Over time, this leads to huge reductions in administrative hours, as well as removing the tedium of replicating content.
Through automation, an LMS is even capable of fine-tuning eLearning content for intensive, personalized learning. In the same way that automation draws from data inputted by educators to aid lesson creation, students completing assessments through an LMS are a rich data source. Every time a student submits work, the LMS - guided by the underlying algorithms - adjusts the content that a student sees the next time they begin work. So if a student demonstrates particular strength in some category of assessment, the LMS can tailor future assessments so that they focus less on that category, and more on areas where they may need further practice. This ability lifts stress from learners, who no longer need to contend with the idea of ‘keeping up’ with classmates. Instead, they become entirely focused on what’s best for their own study.
The ability to tailor learning content for students without being required to spend time analyzing every individual assessment is a major win for educators. In effect, it means that an LMS is performing a continuous skills gap analysis on all course members (read our article, Why Your Organization Needs Skill Gap Analysis, and find out how to find and close skills gaps in your L&D programs. ) Teachers can forget the pressure of designing activities that work for both the highest and lowest achievers in a group, instead relying on an automated LMS to meet individual learning needs. And the data produced from this kind of process is perfect for creating progress and insight reports - an area that automation can also help with. Moodle learning management systems create and store a wealth of data that can be used to report on the effectiveness of courses, showing where learning results can be maximized.
As automation figures more and more in education and training, the wider technology associated with automation will begin to become commonplace in Learning Management Systems. Machine learning is already making gains in efficiency by devising methods by which software can self-improve. The technology, which is at the heart of many AI systems across industries, lets algorithms apply the same optimizing approach they take to content, to themselves. At that point, LMS takes on a symbiotic role with learners, as content develops alongside student progress. This dynamic represents the future of eLearning - the goal of providing a totally unique and interactive environment for each student. While today’s LMS can offer many customizable and personalizing features, it is this possibility that points to a truly exciting future for automated eLearning.
At Lambda Solutions we specialize in implementing eLearning solutions that improve the effectiveness and efficiency of learning and development programs, whether it’s through providing LMS integration or utilizing tools like Lambda Analytics to get the most from your learning analytics, our experts are here to help! If you need to take your eLearning to the next level, contact us today!
Disclaimer: This article was contributed by guest blogger Joe Hitchcock. Joe is a content writer from Vancouver BC, interested in culture, education and fiction. The views and opinions expressed belong to the guest blogger alone, and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or opinions of Lambda Solutions.