What Makes a Good eLearning Platform
We’ve come a long way from traditional eLearning courses to what we have now—interactive eLearning platforms that facilitate knowledge absorption and retention. Still, making a good eLearning platform that actually teaches rather than scares away is a difficult task. Read on to learn what makes a good eLearning platform.
Give the Students Time to Feel Comfortable
Learning can be a challenging experience. Don’t make your learners waste their energies on discovering how to use your platform.
“When creating an eLearning platform, bear in mind that a new user might feel lost. Familiarize the user with your platform by sending emails with helpful tips, implementing site tours, or providing a test course,” says Wiktor Bobowski, Ruby on Rails Developer at Polcode.
Ensure Smooth Communication
Communication is essential to successful learning process. Implementing various means of communication into your platform, such as chats, discussion boards, email, video conferencing, or social media, is a tested approach to evoke further discussion/problem-solving sessions between fellow students.
“Create space for mutual learning like forums or extensive messaging system between users. This will improve the results and become a motivational trigger,” says Wiktor.
Also, remember to facilitate the communication between learners and teachers so that at least one teacher is always available for student inquiries.
Let Your Students Control Their Training
It’s easy to make students discouraged when you force them into a fixed course over which they have no control.
“To motivate students more and make them stay in the application, give them some control over the training. In this way, students decide which elements of the course they would like to tackle and how they would like to do it. This gives your students freedom to plan their own learning schedule,” says Wiktor.
And since you’re making the course for the learner, remember that not everyone wants to approach a subject in the same way.
Make Learning Fun—Gamification
Boring rarely gets the job done in the world of learning. That’s why to make learning a fun and encouraging experience, use game-design solutions in your eLearning platform.
“Gamification is a trend constantly gaining recognition due to measurable results during training. Just like games, it should motivate and keep a user on the right track to learning more,” says Wiktor.
You can utilize the game-like scenario in your courses in many ways.
“For instance, you can divide tasks into different levels which a user achieves upon mastering specific skills. You can also implement a reward system based on point collection that opens additional tasks/functions. This popular solution will certainly continue to develop in the future,” Wiktor continues.
Renowned sites such as Duolingo or Codecademy have gamified their courses a long time ago, acquiring plenty of engaged students across the globe.
Value the Brain of Your Student—Teach in Increments
Presented with a load of material, the brain struggles to absorb all the information, much less retain it. Teaching in increments, meaning splitting the material into chunks, allows the student to better understand and remember the taught subjects.
“Courses should be structured in an effective, easily digestible manner so that a user can learn a specific thing, e.g. web development, faster,” says Wiktor.
At the end of every increment, remember to test the student to help him or her retain the acquired knowledge.
Provide Your Students with Easily Accessible Resources Repository
24/7 access to learning materials is one of the building blocks of eLearning. Your students should be able to browse, download, and reuse learning materials all through the course.
Implement Creative Solutions to Spark Engagement
During your journey to making a good learning platform, you should also consider implementing creative solutions that respond to the growing needs of the learners.
There’s never enough of interface interaction to stimulate engagement. Interactive videos increase the absorption of their material by 10 times compared to classic videos. And it’s no wonder—it’s difficult to keep the learner’s attention all through a long video filled with blocks of information.
But if you equip a video with interactions such as drag and drop or click and learn, students become much more likely to stay engaged until the very end of the video.
Virtual reality has long ago stopped being associated strictly with gaming. Currently, VR conquers the world of eCommerce, real estate, and, of course, eLearning.
VR creates a real-life setting that improves the student’s learning capabilities. But due to still relatively high implementation costs, you might want to first ask around if your courses will benefit from VR.
A good eLearning platform that is engaging and focused on the learner ensures that a course becomes something more than just knowledge absorption. It turns the whole idea of learning into a pleasant, immersive experience.