Presentation is everything; a peacock in the wild knows this. It doesn’t matter how old or young it is, or how great it can fly. When it comes to attracting females, it only matters how well-spread and colorful the feathers are; and how attractive its call sounds.
Increasing learner engagement is about the same. Your learners will not care if you know what you are talkingy about, how long you have slaved putting your lesson together, or even how useful it is. If you cannot grab their attention, everything just falls flat. Your elearning course presentation is independent of content.
Keeping your learners engaged calls for no calculus at all. You can maintain audience engagement throughout the lesson by following these 7 proven tips.
1. Define your destination
So, you have docked your luxurious ship and are patiently waiting for people to come aboard. But, even if for free, no one will get on it unless they know where you are taking them, lest you lead them to the edge of the earth. Make what your learners will get from your lesson clear, where they will be compared to where they are now.
For example, when introducing a new sales system to your marketing team, point out what problems the team is facing with the current system, and how your new system is their savior.
2. Kick off with a video
Remember how a picture is worth a thousand words? Well, a video is worth a thousand pictures. Start your presentation with an informative video of say: an industry expert or testimonials of people who have benefited from the subject. If done well, this can be an effective way of engaging your elearning audience.
3. Add a story
A good story can disengage your audience from the world around them and absorb them into your presentation. As long as you keep it short, easy to follow and personalized, you can keep your learners gripped until the end of the lesson. Hook them by their emotions with a good story, and reel them in by tying it to the presentation.
4. Give your presentation some structure
Adding structure to your presentation makes it more visually stimulating, thereby giving you more learner engagement.
You can use:
- Short paragraphs organized by topic
- Relevant images
- Bullet points and or icons where appropriate
- Different text formats like italics, bold, different colors,and having keywords underlined
- Animated graphics
Maintaining structure in your course will help readers navigate to the information they are looking for easily. Focus on creating a great elearning storyboard before producing courses.
5. Maintain a single theme throughout
It’s important to stick to a single theme through your course. All images, fonts, colors , etc., must be in harmony, steering the audience towards a common message. It is recommended to establish a style guide for your elearning course design and adhere to it. Your audience should at no point start wondering whether they are looking at the same presentation they started watching.
6. Keep the presentation easy to grasp
Learning is simply communication between the presenter and the learner. The easier it is for your learner to decode your message, the more effective the lesson is. You can do this by using well-structured sentences, words your audience is familiar with, and most importantly, graphs and charts to show complex information. It is important to understand that your audience may have neither the interest nor the time to study your material. Break it down for them into small bite-sized bits.
7. Avoid excessive use of images, text, and graphics
If your audience can’t find their way through your presentation, they will soon give up and start staring at their watches. Do not crowd your course with confusing images, text, animated graphics, etc. Your audience will find it easy to follow if you can keep things lean, sharp, and to the point.
Your presentation needs at least as much attention as your material formulation. Increasing learner engagement will help you reap all the rewards for the time spent on putting your courses together.