With travel expenses inflating and the budgets for it increasingly being seen as an unnecessary expense in a connected world, eLearning serves to answer the issues of face-to-face, classroom-based, traditional, instructor lead learning. Now you can bring training courses directly to the learner, on-demand, any time, any place. eLearning allows employees to grow and develop outside the confines of a specific environment. Life long learning helps individuals to become more employable,
Paper to digital
When moving face-to-face courses into an online digital format it is often not so much about uploading content as it is about transforming the content. This needs to be done to create a more robust and interactive approach to the material.
Consider this scenario: have you ever watched a movie based on a book? Think about the differences there are in the story telling between the movie and the book. Most books are not written with the ultimate goal of becoming a film. The format of how information is conveyed in the book is totally different to the medium of film. A lot of time is spent reworking the novel to be fitting for screen. The same process of ‘rewrite’ applies to your paper-based training manual and creating an eLearning experience out of it.
Many changes have to be made in order to convey the same meaning, and sometimes the nuances and subtleties of the one medium just can’t be captured or portrayed as well as in the other. sometimes even one medium is not the ultimate champion for conveying all knowledge. Flipped classrooms and blended learning are excellent solutions here.
Flipped classrooms are when the learner has explored the initial content before attending the classroom-based training. In-class time is devoted to practical exercises and discussions.
Blended learning is when a learner studies a part of the course online, thus controlling aspects of learning such as time, place, path, or pace. Other sections of the course are delivered in the traditional manner, of instructor led training.
Make clear the strategies you wish to employ when transforming your face-to-face training into an eLearning format. ADDIE, AGILE or SAM, these strategies, interactions, multimedia assets and designs will help you to make the actual development of the eLearning course a less complex process.
No matter how well-designed your eLearning courseware may be learners need to actually take and complete the courses. So ensure that change management and accountability are well addressed.
Use an LMS to present the eLearning items. This will help to gather data on interactions, quizzes and progress of students. Flexible reporting tools can help to uncover not only how well the learner has performed, but also to gain insights in to what they learned and where improvements need to be made.
Meet your objectives
Decide if your goals and objectives for overall learning and training have been met. Has the conversion met your expectations? The eLearning courseware doesn't always have to be of an award-winning production value, but it must meet the objectives in an engaging and efficient approach. If the course is a simple PDF scan with no engaging components, no clear objectives or structure and offers no incentives to your learners, the eLearning conversion will be totally ineffective.
There are many side benefits to converting your traditional in-person training material to eLearning. Beyond what has already been mentioned, here are but a few:
- a more streamlined method of course updates;
- centralised location of all courseware;
- the opportunity to final capture the expert's knowledge.
Overall, if after going through the eLearning courses, your employees understand the content and improve in their job performance, not to mention ROI, you can consider your conversion efforts successful.
Sound Idea Digital specialises in Learning Management Systems and eLearning development | soundidealearningmanagement.co.za
Sandra is an eLearning Specialist & Content Editor for Sound Idea Digital | firstname.lastname@example.org
Lord, E. (2010). Converting Classroom Training to eLearning. [PDF] Pasadena: ICS Learning Group, pp.1-11. Available at: http://www.
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