By Falade Benedicta Omorilewa
eLearning is often misunderstood as training that’s simply delivered online. And, while that’s technically true, the spectrum of eLearning is so much more than a paper manual or classroom-delivered PowerPoint presentation converted to searchable online modules.
Understanding the true scope of eLearning requires a deeper look into how it works and how that translates to smarter, savvier, and more productive learners. Whether you’re hoping to incorporate more eLearning into your existing programs or thinking about starting from scratch, knowing the advantages of taking your learning outside of the traditional training room or operations manual will give you a better idea of how your learners can benefit from the switch.
- Reduced Costs
One of the most obvious benefits of eLearning is a reduction in costs when compared to traditional training methods. In-person training is expensive: add up paying for an instructor, travel time, time off work, and even the cost of physical training materials like workbooks, and it’s easy to see how eLearning is more cost-effective.
With eLearning, there’s no cost to reproduce materials and, thanks to mobile learning and microlearning, learners can use their own tech to participate. And, because the classroom is virtual, you save on travel costs, and instructors can record and distribute their sessions any time.
- Multimedia Materials
One of the main reasons why custom eLearning is effective is that it’s the perfect delivery method for multimedia materials. Where else can a learner check out a graphic, watch a video, or share a clip online while learning? Instead of reading pages of text or sitting through a training presentation, learners can be engaged in the material, which increases retention. The spectrum of eLearning materials is vast and can be used in tandem with blended learning for a holistic training approach.
- Sensory Engagement
It’s a well-documented truth that the more senses that are engaged while learning, the better the recall later. When eLearning engages a learner’s eyes, ears and hands during a course, that sensory learning enhances what could have been a lackluster experience. What’s more, simulations and mastery checks give users another chance to truly experience the training in a safe space before employing new skills on the job.
- More Customization
Just like learners aren’t one-size-fits-all, learning is not a one-size-fits-all experience. By using different delivery methods to offer a unique and individual experience for each learner, eLearning helps learners discover, read, watch and interact—at their own pace. This type of customized eLearning creates an educational atmosphere more conducive to learning and retention.
- Course Correction
In a traditional classroom setting, a student might be less likely to raise their hand and risk failure; in the workplace, the same applies: learners may not be open to testing a new skill for fear of getting it wrong.
eLearning gives learners permission to explore, test and yes, even fail as part of the learning process—no judgment here. Continuous, in-the-moment feedback helps learners course-correct and become more proficient in the safest way possible, keeping the learning path moving forward in a positive way.
Who wants to sit through hours of class time to get a few minutes’ worth of new information?
eLearning speeds up the process for learners who go at a quicker pace, saving time and resources for the ultimate in efficiency. eLearning can also allow learners to test out of material they’ve already learned, also saving time.