Adults are increasingly heading online to learn. Whether it’s for personal or professional advancement, they’re logging on to access information that can help them remain competitive. The e-learning market was projected to reach $107 billion just one year ago, and according to the Global E-learning Market 2016-2020 report, the space will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 17.81 percent over the next few years.
But very little of the content on a web page is actually read and understood — usually only by people who are interested in it. So, where does that leave corporate learning leaders using e-learning to equip employees to perform? In an August 2016 article, eLearning Industry, a resource for learning professionals, offered five strategies to better grab and keep learners’ attention. Here are some of the ideas:
Introduce the new. It helps to compare old and familiar concepts to the new and exciting. Novelty is rewarding for learners. Exposed to new things, the brain releases dopamine, also known as the “reward chemical,” spurring further exploration and improving memory, among other things.
Remember, K.I.S.S. — Keep it simple and so on-target. Time is short and finite. Companies can’t afford to send employees through a crowded and complicated program just to learn skills essential for doing their jobs. People like information, they like choices, but they can and will be overwhelmed by too much either. Therefore, to retain learner’s focus, some word economy may be in order. At the very least, learning-material design should consider KISS to make the most of learners’ attention.
Read more: Make Learning Viral-Worthy to Make It Last
Engage learners with questions. Inviting learners to question concepts and new ideas prompts them to actively participate and think while they read or listen to course material, wrote eLearning Industry’s Scott Ragin. In highly accessible and increasingly mobile online environments asking questions takes on added value, as it stimulates learners and encourages their thoughtful engagement when variables not found in a traditional classroom setting threaten distraction.
Bravetta Hassell is a Chief Learning Officer associate editor. To comment, email editor@CLOmedia.com.