There is a real shift going on in the eLearning industry that has nothing to do with content delivery. It is focused more on time maximization with limits on overloading employees engaged in continuing education and professional training. Microlearning is the process of shortening longer courses into bite-sized chunks, and it offers a host of important benefits to employers and employees alike.
Reduce Costs with Microlearning
Microlearning allows all the information of a longer course to be included in multiple smaller chunks or lessons at a lower development cost. It takes less time for L&D professionals to create three 10-minute segments than creating one 30-minute module, and those savings are passed along to employers. It also means that eLearning courses can be created more quickly. That saves employers time while ensuring that employees are able to begin training as quickly as possible.
With microlearning, learners are empowered to choose the right content at the right time for their specific needs. This addresses just-in-time training, but also applies to longer-term professional education. Microlearning modules can be completed through a conventional eLearning process, such as accessing the material on a workstation within the organization, or they can be tailored for access from mobile devices. This ensures learners are able to access the program during their most productive time, often during their “down” time.
Immediate Application of Knowledge
With microlearning, educational material is laser-focused on one or two objectives. This ensures maximum absorption and retention on the part of learners as well as their ability to apply that knowledge immediately. Today’s busy professionals find this helpful when faced with questions about procedures or requirements for in-process responsibilities.
All eLearning courses must be changed, updated, and upgraded over time. That is simply the nature of the beast. Modifying a10-minute segment is a much simpler process than upgrading an entire hour-long module. Multiple smaller modules can be modified or even completely replaced in less time, which benefits both learners and employers.
eLearning is increasingly common in the workplace. In some settings, it is even required by industry regulations, state, or federal law. However, it is does not always support employee productivity. Microlearning can enhance employee productivity by ensuring key information absorption and retention within a much shorter period. An employee can complete a module or two and then return to regular duties.
Potential Challenges for Employers and L&D Professionals
While microlearning offers many benefits, it is not without its challenges. One of the most common is condensing material into a shorter format without eliminating key development topics. Another potential issue is delivery – what plan is in place to ensure that the newly developed modules are made available to employees on the job and on personal mobile devices? It is essential that eLearning developers have a good grasp on creating shorter, more concise courses.
As an employee’s responsibilities grow, their free time is reduced, and they lose flexibility. Microlearning can combat this issue while still ensuring ongoing professional training. However, employers need to choose carefully when deciding on an eLearning developer to serve their needs.