eLearning is all about communication. Communication in eLearning begins when the L&D manager communicates with the eLearning designer to tell them what the eLearning course should be about, and ends with the learners telling the L&D manager what they think about the eLearning course in the form of feedback.
Even the eLearning course itself is a form of communication which allows learners to develop skills and knowledge. Thus, in order to help learners be their best productive selves, L&D professionals need to become effective eLearning communicators. Now that we’ve answered why being an effective eLearning communicator is important, let us tackle how L&D professionals can do that.
1. Know Your Audience
In order to be effective eLearning communicators, L&D professionals need to be able to put themselves in the shoes of their learners and see things from their perspective. The best way to gain a learner’s perspective are to discuss their learning needs and interests with them face-to-face in an interview, but this isn’t possible in organizations with a lot of employees. Other ways to discern what the learners need are surveys and questionnaires. Once you’ve understood what every individual learner/employee needs, and what interests them, you can get your eLearning team to design eLearning courses that are learner-centric. Use learner-centric digital learning strategies like mobile learning and microlearning to communicate even better with modern learners on their level using eLearning.
2. Pay Heed To Learner Feedback
Communication is not all about sending information but receiving feedback as well. This is why feedback plays a very important role in eLearning, and every individual wishing to be an effective eLearning communicator must know to pay heed to learner feedback. Paying heed to learner feedback has a number of benefits, including the valuable insight you get that helps make your eLearning courses more learner-centric and targeted to individual learners, as well as the fact that it sends a message to the learners that someone is hearing their suggestions and /or vows and acting upon them, and all in all valuing their input. This is important in building trust and is a hallmark of good communication.
3. Engage Your Learners
Effective communication in eLearning cannot be achieved if you fail to engage modern learners. Thus, your eLearning will have to incorporate a number of engagement strategies. There is no dearth of engagement strategies in modern digital learning, and there are strategies such as video-based learning, gamification, microlearning, simulations that you can use to engage your learners. Knowing your audience will come in handy here, as you know which engagement strategy is effective for every individual learner. Engagement is so important a part of eLearning communication that courses with a higher engagement rate often lead to higher completion rates, higher retention rates as well as higher learner satisfaction.
4. Always Provide Learners With Context
We live in a modern era where less is more. Learners are drowning in information due to uninhibited access to it, which is why digital learning strategies such as microlearning have been created to provide them with just need-to-know, concentrated and relevant information. However, sometimes this can lead to confusion among learners if not enough context is provided. Not providing context to your learners so that they understand where to begin and where to end is bad communication, and can lead to a disconnect from courses. Thus, every eLearning professional wishing to be an effective eLearning communicator must always provide their learners with context either before the beginning of a module or at the beginning of a module. This could be in the form of text at the beginning of the module, or an explainer video before the beginning of the module.
eLearning is a form of communication that has become a worldwide tool for employee learning, development and training. Thus it is very important for eLearning professionals to learn the nuances of eLearning communication. All it needs is a little effort, and following the above mentioned tips to be a better eLearning communicators and greatly benefitting the learners/employees of your organization. The more actively you try to eliminate any communication barriers in your course, the better you’ll be able to direct and guide your learners towards skill development and knowledge.