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Knowing Your Learner

If your considering eLearning for your business you need to start by identifying who your learner is and what they want from their eLearning. We’ve put together some of the key things you need to consider to help you do this.

Posted 28 August 2019

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Understand the Learners Grasp of Technology

So you want the latest technological advanced e-Learning course on the market, but what does your learner need? It’s easy to get carried away with the latest technology and in some cases, it is the right choice.  But what if your learner isn’t tech savvy?  Introducing them to something they won’t know how to use means they aren’t getting the best out of their eLearning and probably only focusing on how to navigate through the course.  So ask yourself, how does your learner use technology? Do they log on to their desktop PC a few times a week to write an email and do some online shopping, or do they use their mobile daily to do everything online? This understanding will help you make the course more relevant and impactful for the learner.

Think About How Your Learner Will Access the Course

Traditionally in eLearning, the learners would access courses via a laptop or desk top PC, but we are seeing an increasing requirement for courses that can be completed on-the-go. This is especially relevant for those with a role that involves travel. If you invest in a course that isn’t accessible for the majority of your learners, it will not be an effective learning tool. It doesn’t make any sense to centre your eLearning around use on a tablet or mobile phone if your learner isn’t on board for it.  Also consider whether they’ll have a good internet connection? Will they need a VPN (Virtual Private Network)?  These are all things that will impact the learner.  It’s great to try new methods of delivering your eLearning, however, it’s critical you have support in place. This will help your learners feel confident in their ability to get the best out of their learning, giving you the positive impact on your business you’re looking for.

Know Your Learner’s Knowledge and Skill Level

Is your course for long-serving employees or new hires?  For experienced employees, you might be able to skip some of the basic concepts within your course, delving a bit deeper into more advanced and relevant topics. Or you might be able to condense their training.  It’s also useful to think about your learner’s competency level, whether they are middle management or executives and what is an appropriate tone of voice.  

Consider Obstacles Your Learner Might Face

There are many reasons why a learner might find it hard to complete a course.  Lack of time is one of the biggest factors. Most people don’t have the luxury of having hours to complete their eLearning and need to incorporate it into their daily working life. There are different ways you can tackle this. You might consider breaking up your content into smaller chunks of information which can be accessed and completed in one sitting that is no longer than 15 minutes. This makes it much easier for your learner to manage their time appropriately. You can also consider breaking up content into short sections within a longer course, so the learner can dip in and out depending on work load. It also lets the learner decide what they feel is the most important thing for them to learn at that moment, which can help increase engagement.

Identify Your Learners Training Needs

Making sure your eLearning course is valuable and worthwhile for your learner is essential. The last thing you want the learner to think mid-course is ‘why am I doing this?’ Instead, think about why you want your learners to do your course. Is it going to solve an ongoing specific problem, are there new mandatory laws coming into effect soon or new processes they need to be aware of? Doing this thinking up front will help you ensure your course meets the needs of your learners.