5 Ways to Increase Retention In E-Learning Courses

Retention of knowledge is as crucial as transfer of it – something that instructional designers often forget easily. The thing is – IDs may be too burdened with the task of organizing content that they often forget how to write it in a way that is learner-friendly. E-learning actually wins over traditional classroom training in several ways when it comes to making learning stick because of its versatile capabilities. Audios, videos, graphics and multimedia add a whole new dimension to the learning experience.

5-ways-to-increase-retention-in-e-learning

Repeat often

Repetition is a must for retention. Spaced learning is a technique that increases the intervals of time between consecutive recaps of learnt material. This enables some knowledge to sit in the minds of students. Learners get a chance to fill in the missing information when the repetition exercise happens.

Make it interactive

An interactive course ensures that learners are involved in it instead of merely sitting and receiving information passively. Instructional designers must try and balance interactivity to appeal to all the different kinds of learners by incorporating a variety of multimedia.

Transfer information in bites

Learners find it extremely easy to ‘munch’ on bite sized information every now and then, instead of being bombarded with too much at a time. Focus on the important aspects and trim extraneous irrelevant details to create micro courses. Remember:  with training, less is often more.

Make tests regular and interesting

Assessments must be interesting and interactive, and taken frequently so that the e-learning program is on track for all learners. Since e-learning is often self-paced, an upcoming test, say at the end of a month, ensures that there is some form of discipline. Also, it must be borne in mind that a concept once tested, should be tested again after a lapse of sometime. This ensures both – that the learning environment isn’t too vague or unaccountable, and knowledge is retained as well.

Connect emotionally

Making an emotional connect with the audience is one of the most widely used and tested ways of holding their attention. Be it storytelling techniques or use of an avatar, learners grasp information much more easily when they can relate emotionally to a subject. Storytelling helps to maintain curiosity in the audience and teaches concepts in a practical, case based manner. On the other hand, using an avatar which has responsibilities identical to those of the learners creates an instant emotional connect, thereby enabling improved learning and retention.

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