The term ‘eLearning’ first came into the limelight in 1999 in Los Angeles, amid a seminar on Computer Based Training (CBT). Even with limited Internet access to the general public at the time, training course developers (primarily programmers and IT experts) managed to create eLearning courseware accessible through the intranet, CD-ROM, and – to a lesser extent – a few websites. However, next-gen eLearning is primed to take off, with rapid communication available to the public and cloud-based learning on the rise. We’ll discuss what it takes to produce next-generation eLearning in this article.
What Are the Elements of Next-gen eLearning?
The next-gen eLearning will take a holistic approach to learning rather than focusing on singular ideas like learning outcomes or course completion. As a result, the guiding principles for a future-focused eLearning environment will be more eclectic and derived from a cross-pollination of diverse educational perspectives, such as cognitive constructivism, behaviorism, and socio-constructivism.
Dynamic and Concise
This implies that your classes must be responsive to your students’ changing demands and schedules. Learners may expect assignment submissions via social media postings or text messaging to be accepted in the future. Also, the modern employee faces time crunches, which means you’ll have to create brief courses that are to the point.
The contemporary learner will want their eLearning to be more than the text-heavy, cluttered approach that most courses now take. Instead, you’ll need to create courses that can be tailored to the needs of individual students.
This implies mobile, on-demand, anytime, anywhere courses that work across various platforms (desktops, cellphones, tablets, and TVs) and feature seamless transitions — for example, starting a session on a smartphone, continuing on the office laptop, and finishing on a tablet at home.
Significant Trends that Will Shape the Next-gen eLearning Framework
In the coming years, eLearning as we know it will alter dramatically. That’s because as technology advances, so will changes in social behavior, which will influence how learners consume training content.
When building next-generation eLearning courses, keep the following trends and ideas in mind:
Time will be one of the major constraints for the next generation of learners. As a result, eLearning will have to be lean and light, with content ingested in small chunks.
For the information, videos, news feeds, and live streaming events used in social learning, the respective eLearning courseware will need to be far more diverse. Your eLearning content will need to be available on various social media sites.
Instead of only intranet or private cloud-based corporate infrastructure, the content will need to be built for sharing across public and open forums.
Core information in next-gen eLearning will need to be more measurable than available through Learning Management System capabilities. Course creators will need to integrate their content with advanced learning tracking and management tools such as predictive analytics.
How to Deploy Next-gen eLearning in Your Firm?
Instead of waiting until the next-gen eLearning becomes mainstream and more clarity emerges about where it is headed, instructional designers and eLearning developers can begin planning for the future of corporate training platform now.
- Assess the current state of the organization’s eLearning skills and strengths.
- Take a comprehensive inventory of all existing eLearning assets, including content, infrastructure, and personnel.
- Brainstorm, ideally with the support of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), where the organization needs to be in terms of eLearning skills in the next decade.
- Create a detailed road map for preparing the firm to achieve its aim of being ready for next-generation eLearning.
- Determine all strategic, program-specific, platform-centric, and infrastructure-related adjustments that you will require to support the roadmap. Budget allocation, sourcing, and timing will all be critical decisions.
- Examine current corporate eLearning assets such as lesson plans, curriculum, video, audio, exercises, exams, and assessments, to see which ones need to be re-engineered or updated to match the company’s next-generation eLearning roadmap.
- Create short-term plans to design or update appropriate e learning courses to complement the company’s overall next-generation eLearning strategy.
It’s vital to remember that, just as eLearning has grown from its beginnings in 1999 to what it is now, next-gen eLearning will continue to evolve. As a result, when businesses begin preparing for next-generation eLearning, their strategies must be flexible. Roadmaps, action and project plans, and learning programs will need to alter to keep up with learners’ technological and social behavioral changes.