Online Learning Update

July 28, 2016

How to Make E-Learning So People Really Learn: Q&A With Ethan Edwards

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:10 am

by Justin Brusino, ATD

For starters, Ethan lays out some basic aspects of a quality e-learning course. Surprisingly, the key elements are the same as traditional, face-to-face training. There is a specific outcome that is clear to the learner, and information is provided to help the learner achieve some specific goal. The design still needs to be learner-centric, “where the learner is driving the process, and it adapts to differences in the learner,” he says. More importantly, he explains that the challenge the learner is engaged in needs to have meaning. Sounds simple, right? The problem with most e-learning courseware, according to Ethan, is that designers get caught up in the media. Meanwhile, on the end of the spectrum, subject matter experts are applying pressure on designers to “just present content”—a lot of content. Consequently, too much e-learning—and training, for that matter—is presented like a trivia contest. What’s more, Ethan reminds, that “reading or listening to content without purpose is one of the most dull things in the universe.”

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