Have you seen your parents’ virtual classroom? Probably not. And for sure your grandparents haven’t heard about e-learning at all, mainly because it didn’t exist when they were in school. Despite the fact that e-learning is currently the top trend in continuing education, there are a lot of challenges to overcome. One thing is certain though: you need to keep an eye on the e-learning trends that are expected to be widely available by the end of 2019.
Virtual and Augmented reality: new levels of knowledge
Virtual and augmented reality are currently the hottest methods being used to carry out trainings. Virtual reality creates a simulated immersive environment, while augmented reality blends computer generated information with the viewer’s natural senses. Research and development in using AR and VR are growing in the online education sphere as learning providers are recognizing their potential to offer a more in-depth and tailored program of study.
Both of these technologies immerse the learner in a more tangible and realistic learning experience. They are similar to traditional role-plays, but better, because they allow trainees to actively practice new skills.
The use of AR/VR allows tutors to engage their students more thoroughly while creating a more interactive environment that sparks student imagination and encourages deeper learning. Try to seek out more tips for online teachers on how to use these technologies.
Mobile learning: knowledge at your fingertips
The key to the expected success of mobile learning is that half of the world uses smartphones and that number is growing year after year.
Mobile learning increases user reach by offering flexibility and accessibility. Students can learn from everywhere and make the most of their virtual classroom.
Mobile learning is the delivery of educational content to students utilizing mobile computing devices. Mobile learning has certain benefits like contextualized learning, capturing data, a record of learning processes, new learning environments, flexible collaboration, an immediacy of communication, access to experts and peers on-the-go, etc.
Social learning: sharing success
Researchers have found that 70% of people gain new knowledge through social and informal settings. This is probably because learning together reduces feelings of isolation in students and increases their transfer of knowledge, perspectives, and experiences. When you study as a part of a group, you feel more motivated to engage and to achieve better results. Nothing encourages people more than this. We all strive to belong somewhere, and thanks to technology you no longer have to study alone. That’s why social learning is the top e-learning trend of the year.
When learning is distributed or when sharing happens among peers, education improves. Social polling is also a powerful tool that gives students the ability to share their opinions and upload videos.
Forums, live chats, and collaborative and shared resources help create an online learning space for learners to engage with one another regardless of where they live.
Microlearning: one step at a time
We all know that the best way to learn something new is by taking on small amounts of information at a time. But somehow traditional education doesn’t fit that system.
Microlearning provides small, bite-sized lessons lasting from 60 seconds to 20 minutes, taking full advantage of when the learner feels the most motivated to concentrate. This technique is more effective at keeping students driven to learn than if they were to sit in on a 2-hour lecture.
This type of bite-sized learning has already become a strong trend as organizations look to reap the benefits of this new way of delivering targeted, objective-specific, and no-nonsense knowledge. Specific benefits include quick deployment, fast learning through regular refreshers, increased productivity, and easy tracking.
Studies show that people cannot really fully focus on something for more than 20 minutes. That’s why microlearning uses short interactive videos, games, quizzes, interactive infographics, and even podcasts.
Microlearning works well when organizations create modules that have specific learning objectives. It is not about chunky complex procedures or teaching problem-solving skills. Microlearning works best when it is timely and when it addresses a specific question that the learner may have about their job.
Gamification: the king of learning
The use of games in education is not at all new, however the possibilities of e-learning are endless.
Millennials understand gamification and will be looking for the same principles in their e-learning platforms as they move into the workforce in the coming years. Organizations will also continue to invest in serious games, as well as add a game element to their custom courses in order to retain student interest and entice them to take learning seriously by having fun.
As paradoxical as it may sound, gaming increases the “seriousness” in learners as they fully immerse themselves in the process of gaming. Games can be used to explain difficult concepts or to test a learner’s knowledge in a less formal way. They can be created for any subject and adapted for different skill levels, making gamification one of the most important tools available to any eLearning provider.