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Five Factors Required for Effective Online Learning

Five Factors Required for Effective Online Learning

The Covid-19 pandemic has forced the majority of workplace learning from the classroom to virtual online platforms. While this is seen as a positive move by many, there are some training providers who have simply moved their classroom-based course online use without proper adaption or consideration for how the change affects learners, content and outcomes.

If a training provider has very quickly moved their courses online then it is possible the outcomes will be less than favourable.

At Creative Word Training we have been offering E-Learning courses and online training options for the last few years, building our range of courses and tailoring them to meet the needs of the modern business and trainees.

Our courses are tried and tested, run by industry expert trainers who have years of experience in both their chosen sector and training.

We know what it takes to make online learning effective for trainees and want to share our top five factors with you so that you can make the best choice for your firm and trainees.


1. E-Learning Must be Relevant

Transferring to a predominantly online system of training doesn’t mean that you can automatically move all classroom-based content into the online version and hope that it will have the same outcome just because it worked in the classroom.

Online training that looks like it has lots of content might sound great but if there is limited interaction, discussion groups, assessments and experiential learning opportunities, then trainees are likely to become bored very quickly, have minimal retention once training is complete, and have less engagement with the whole process.

If content is not relevant to the trainees, they won’t take much away from the course.
Ensure all ‘virtual’ learning you use has a variety of elements to encourage engagement and has content which offers relevancy on all levels.



2. E-Learning Should be Fun

Those teachers and influential educators who make our learning experiences memorable usually contain an element of fun and make learning an enjoyable experience.

Where online learning is concerned, some of the fun often seems to have evaporated during the conversion from classroom-based learning, but this can be detrimental to whole learning process for trainees.

Light-hearted humour, interaction with other learners and engaging, entertaining trainers can trigger deeper learning experiences, meaning trainees are able to fully engage with their learning.

Courses that offer thought-provoking images, fitting musical accompaniments, light-hearted challenges, or mini-competitions as a starter to online training often allows trainees to get to know each other and work as a ‘virtual’ team.

It can encourage the more reticent to join in a discussion and allows contributions from all trainees.



3. E-Learning Should Allow for all Learning Styles

We are all more aware than ever that we are individuals with different preferences, dislikes, abilities and attitudes, so it should come as no surprise that this also applies to learning styles.

Classroom-based learning often worked through these different learning styles by offering individual attention to each student as became necessary. However, this is not possible with E-Learning.

Instead, learners must have a variety of resources and learning options available to them during online learning so that every learning style is covered.

This might include:

• Images

• Quizzes

• Peer assessments

• Videos

• Forums

• Lectures

• Verbal response options

Finding a training provider that covers a variety of learning styles in each course is vital if you hope to appeal to all trainees.



4. E-Learning Should be as Social as Classroom-based Learning

In a traditional classroom setting trainees are restricted to interaction with the other people in the room, but with E-Learning there is the possibility for interaction with people from all over the world.

Peer-to-peer social interaction is a vital part of learning – trainees can sound out ideas, critique each other, and encourage or inspire others.

E-Learning also gives an opportunity to include guest speakers, industry experts, mentors and coaches who can contribute to the overall content and learning experience.

E-learning offers possibilities for broader interaction that classroom-based learning could never hope to match.



5. E-Learning should use the Best Trainers (who are also Trainees)

Trainers who regularly complete additional professional training and upskill themselves make the best teachers.

They can understand a trainee’s perspective, know how to engage learners, and can utilise additional skills such as, effective communication, influence and giving appropriate feedback.

However, a trainer that is competent when leading classroom-based courses won’t automatically transfer well for online courses.

The best trainers are likely to have been educated in preparation for the transition to online courses, have a sound educational foundation and be industry experts!

It may sound like a lot to expect but professional training providers should be supporting and training their trainers, and wider team, so that they can create the effective training programmes for your firm’s future.

At Creative Word Training, we only use trainers who have years of industry experience in their area of expertise, regularly complete upskilling and training programmes themselves, and are engaging and inspiring.

If you would like to find out more about our E-Learning courses, please click here. You can also review our trainers, or contact us about any courses we offer.