E-learning has become increasingly popular over recent years but the Covid-19 pandemic has meant that many more people are now realising the benefits of accessing training courses remotely and using the technology to increase their employability, improve their skills, and continue their professional development.
It has also become more widespread as an alternative to workplace training, for example, on-the-job training such as, health and safety, leadership and management skills, cultural awareness, or continuing IT improvements.
What is E-learning?
E-learning is a form of structured, virtual learning delivered to trainees and learners remotely through online portals.
Each course is different but will usually include some, or all of the following elements:
• Virtual classroom – remote teaching which can allow for live interaction between tutor and learners. Learners can be based at one location (in an office) or in multiple locations (when working from home)
• Webinars – an online seminar where tutors can deliver presentations, lectures and so on, which is often interactive. Topics can be discussed, and problems and solutions can be worked through together meaning learners are more engaged.
• Online resources – e-learning offers the ability for learners to engage with resources remotely, at any time and any place. Virtual libraries, links to further information and assessments can help learners monitor their progress and their success.
• Engaging components – components such as, an introduction to the course, course objectives, teaching modules, virtual classroom units, set tasks, pre-recorded teaching segments, assessments, practice activities and certification of completion (or exam certificate) should be available in all good quality e-learning courses.
E-learning is an effective method for training employees, ongoing personal development and continuing professional development, and is often a cheaper alternative for staff training as there are no travel or accommodation costs, can be delivered during work hours or in employees’ own time, and additionally, there is the benefit of being able to access the best training providers, no matter where they are based.
The Benefits of E-learning
Research has shown that e-learning is proven to be more effective for learners, especially e-learning based on “graphical lessons” which “can have a substantial effect on the acceptance of e-learning”.
Many e-learning training courses offer colourful, imaginative, interactive elements which help engage learners while improving retention and completion rates. The quality of training courses should be as good, if not better, than conventional learning options as training providers have been able to improve and adapt their courses over time where necessary, and they are also more consistent due to some elements being pre-recorded.
E-learning offers the following benefits:
• Cost-effective training – costs usually linked to training such as, accommodation, travel, and materials are lower than with conventional training which is good news for businesses during the current uncertain economic climate
• Flexibility – e-learning can often be performed anywhere and at any time. This suits learners who may be more motivated and receptive at specific times of the day or night, and also means that firms can schedule training into particular time slots that fit best for them and their employees
• Self-structured learning – learners can engage with training courses at their own pace and according to their individual abilities. It is also possible to revisit modules that they didn’t understand or to revise parts in order to improve personal results.
• Convenient – e-learning is more convenient than traditional learning in many ways. There is no travel, it can be tailored to an individual’s requirements, and it can be performed anywhere.
• Engaging – good quality, professional e-learning courses engage with learners through offering diverse, colourful, interactive components that appeal to many different learning styles and preferences. There is usually something for everyone, no matter which style of learning engages you best, such as, videos, games, images and appealing written segments. Learning is more effective, and information is retained for longer, if it is fun.
If you are looking to improve your personal development, employability, or continue your professional development during the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, then the Creative Word team can help.
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