MICROLEARNING: TAILORED DISTANCE LEARNING FOR USERS

Distance Learning (DL) – and the world of education in general – is focused on innovation, which brings benefits not only to the trainers, but also and especially to the learners.

Nowadays, the frenzy of everyday life reduces the time that can be devoted to personal training and professional updating.

Thanks to microlearning, it is now possible to adapt the training to the students’ needs.

MICROLEARNING: DEFINITION AND ASSUMPTIONS

Microlearning is certainly one of the most interesting trends of the e-learning sector, because it responds to a specific need of the trainees: a training process taking into account the limited time available.

This new trend comes from a research conducted on the attention paid by the users over time.

According to the experts, during a training session, a lesson or a conference, people are able to follow the explanation carefully for the first 8 minutes and if after 20 minutes no new elements are introduced, the attention collapses until disappearing. In addition, 80% of information and concepts are forgotten after 30 days if a reinforcement intervention is missing.

Microlearning is the solution: it consists in dividing the e-learning content into short-term units (2-5 minutes). In this way the level of attention of the learners will increase and the training will be less demanding.

THE ADVANTAGES OF MICROLEARNING

After giving a first definition and highlighting the assumption on which microlearning is based, let’s now list the advantages that microlearning can bring to the world of distance learning (DL):

  • Just in time training: the e-learning courses allow you to make a concept interactive and easy to understand. The goal of providing just-in-time training remains the same, but thanks to comprehension controls and interactive elements, it is more likely that the learners will be able to use and store the information received. With microlearning, which makes the contents accessible at any time and in any place, the objective of just-in-time training is certainly achieved;
  • Flexibility: the training can take place at any time and place and it is not separated from the daily activity;
  • Ease of customization and updating: given the nature of microlearning courses and of DL in general, it will be easier and faster for trainers to update and customize the content of the online courses based on the learners' needs.

HOW TO USE MICROLEARNING: STRATEGIES

In order to effectively use microlearning, it is necessary to develop a strategy that takes into account both the learners’ needs and the necessary tools to satisfy them.

First of all, you need to have a simple, intuitive and totally customizable e-learning platform. The software you are going to use is crucial in this sense.

Once you choose your platform (here you can see all our e-learning software), you need to focus on the contents; you don’t have to choose traditional contents, but engaging and interactive formats such as videos and SCORM courses.

The final step is the constant monitoring of the students’ activity and the adaptation of the contents to their needs.

CONCLUSION

Microlearning, like all the new trends and digital technologies, brings with it advantages, but also potential difficulties. It’s up to those who adopt them to exploit their potential and limit their problems, in order to pursue a winning strategy.

If you want to remain updated on the e-learning world, take a look at our collection of articles.

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