Historically, employee training relied heavily on a lecture style of teaching where the employees had to reach the training session on time, listen attentively to the instructor, take down notes quickly and wait until the next day to get their doubts clarified. The duration of courses was dependent on the completion rate of others. It means even if you are ahead of your fellow employees, you’ll not be awarded a certificate. Also, they had to hunt for good reference training material here and there, which again wasted a lot of time. This gave rise to various issues like- lower engagement, inability to retain information, and high dropout rates.
With digitization, the mode of training has undergone a remarkable change. What was taught in enclosed boardrooms is now taught on a virtual or digital platform? Recently, organizations are exploring ways in which they can modernize their training to solve the above-mentioned issues. And to this microlearning seems to be the best of all solutions.
What is microlearning?
Microlearning is a method of eLearning that delivers pint-sized content which is short and crisp. It is especially helpful to those employees who are unwilling to attend long online training sessions. Microlearning enables the breaking down of lengthy and bulky learning content into smaller chunks that can be easily digested.
Today, the eLearning market is fuelled by the rising demand for microlearning. A learning management system (LMS) is what makes microlearning a reality.
An LMS is a web-based technology that plans, implements, and tracks online training. It delivers online training, which is straight to the point!
Benefits of microlearning-
1. Short and crisp eLearning content-
Microlearning enables online instructors to create compact, concise and meaningful eLearning content. The smaller the content, the easier it will be to digest. For example, online instructors can make small online training tutorial videos of a maximum length of 10 minutes. When the videos will be of small length, online learners will tend to watch them frequently as compared to videos which are of 60 minutes duration.
2. Quick and easy to update-
In a traditional training setup, updating material is very burdensome. The instructor had to rewrite everything, get it printed, distribute hard copies and deliver the lecture again. This requires hours of dedication and hard work. Isn’t this tiring?
However, microlearning allows online instructors and eLearning project managers to easily update the material. The eLearning content is stored in a central online training library, which is accessible to all.
Microlearning is more budget-friendly, hence even smaller organizations can invest in it. The eLearning project managers need to just ensure that condensed eLearning material is being uploaded on an LMS platform. It thus completely does away with the spending money on heavy and thick books loaded with facts that are often difficult to understand. Also, it eliminates the need to spend on venue and instructor fees.
4. Supports mobile learning-
Today almost everyone holds a mobile phone in their hands. An LMS enabled microlearning ensures that you can learn by just pressing a button. Thus, it eliminates the need to sit at your work desk with a laptop or computer on. You can learn anywhere and everywhere with just a mobile device.
5. eLearning courses become easier to complete-
With small-small steps, one can complete online training on time. Whenever an online learner finds time, he can access online training courses and get started. He doesn’t have to wait for others to start or finish. This offers self-directed learning.
Microlearning is also helpful to those employees who want to refine their skills while continuing their job and seeks to manage work and learning simultaneously.
6. Better retention-
Studies have shown that microlearning increases retention levels. For example, among two numbers 756743101 and 756 743 101, which is easier to memorize? Of course the second one.
Similarly, when the eLearning content is divided into bits as creating short notes and breaking down larger topics into smaller, online learners will develop interest.
Also, when online learners have access to media of their choice- infographics, animated videos etc, the online training content becomes more interesting and fun. This AI-powered LMS can do wonders in online training.
The human brain is not wired to work and perform for long periods. It functions well with a short burst of information. The repetition also aids in retention.
7. Swiftly fill training gaps-
“One step at a time” is the basic approach of microlearning. This enables employees to fill training gaps without the need to sit for the entire day. For instance, if you want to know how to assemble a mobile phone, then you don’t have to access an online training course which ison repairing a mobile phone. The eLearning training modules thus are differentiated into different categories and the online learner can pick and choose as per his needs.
8. Boosts motivation to learn-
When online learners are able to finish a small eLearning training module on time, this empowers them to look for other online training courses to expand their skillset and knowledge.
9. Gamify microlearning-
Gamification and microlearning is a dynamite combination for online training. Integrating game-like features in microlearning adds a spark of competition among online learners.
For instance, creating mini-games which the online learners need to finish in 10 minutes. The characters in the games should resonate with the real-life professional characters (i.e., based on what role does a person plays in the corporate sector). Through such games, the online learners can constantly be reminded about their role and the way they can excel in it.
Also, by rewarding badges, virtual coins, thumbs up etc, the online learner remains motivated.
Well, no matter how advanced online training becomes, microlearning cannot replace classroom learning. Instead, microlearning is helpful to those who need an immediate solution and want to continue learning. As it offers tremendous flexibility, one can learn even while working, traveling or eating.
Lastly, we can conclude by saying, microlearning is learner-centric and delivers the right outcome by being easily accessible. Hence, whether your organization is big or small, you must adopt microlearning.