The pandemic’s impact on the Learning and Development industry has been intense, with organizations and educationists across the globe maximizing learning platforms to help learners to accelerate knowledge for personal and organizational growth. The pandemic also encouraged interactivity in the absence of personal interaction and helped learners to experience self-paced and personalized content.
However, as we continue our journey into the new normal, the industry looks to return to the physical mode. Several companies have restarted the learning and development of their employees through physical engagement. But the aura of online education may stay strong after all, as its advantages and benefits are tangible. So, would going back to the physical learning environment be the right idea? Or is it possible that LMSs will be the future for learning and education companies?
Getting over the traditional mindset
In the corporate sector, training plays a crucial role in employee growth and development. Over the years, LMSs have grown in importance, and offline training, in many instances, has been replaced by online training. The only challenge was the comfort levels of trainers who found the online medium a barrier to their ability to engage with the audience. This, too, has been corrected as the online medium witnesses the same interactivity as physical classrooms.
Adaptive learning is especially helpful for corporate training as it helps to personalize the learning journey of the learner as per their requirements and existing knowledge. Learners can be tested on their existing knowledge and then advised on a learning path that would take them forward towards new information.
Data-Driven Personalized Learning
In some instances, L&D departments are trying to retain the critical advantages of eLearning sessions in the physical environment, paving the way for learning like hybrid and blended classrooms. According to the Center for Digital Education, blended learning using online resources can supplement face-to-face instruction. Hybrid learning can also utilize online resources to replace portions of students’ instruction that would otherwise be delivered face-to-face. Today, there are platforms that support blended learning by making training programs scalable where classroom-based or IL training is critical to a program.
In a typical physical classroom setting, it may be difficult to personalize learner journeys, and this is one of the biggest advantages of online learning. Today, there are technology platforms that maximize available data generated during learners’ interactions with the platform. This data helps to better understand the skills levels, experience etc., and provides tailormade learning paths that are fine-tuned and personalized. Data analytics and adaptive e learning solutions driven by AI/ML algorithms play an important role in making this happen.
The concept of the hybrid model can be extended to group learning as well. Organizations and individuals can leverage online community platforms to engage with their peers, friends, and community. Insights from these discussions can be used to identify popular topics and queries that need more attention.
Group discussion forums can also encourage learners to collaborate and discuss topics. A seamless learning platform empowers learners to collaborate and discuss, and learners can utilize the expert insights from these discussions.
Democratization of knowledge
eLearning courses are available in the form of paid and free online courses. For instance – a YouTube channel that started three years back, became famous for its lectures to underprivileged children who could not afford paid coaching. Several of their courses were practically free, often costing a minimal amount. The platform did wonders by enabling disadvantaged children to access training materials from professionals in their fields, even in remote tribal areas. Many outlets such as this have come to the fore, essentially democratizing learning and making content on numerous topics available for free or just a nominal charge.
Evolution and growth
Companies today want to provide on-demand, personalized training to their employees that transcend geographical limits. A platform with expert-led courses that can help them upgrade their employees’ skillset from anywhere is essentially what they need. A data driven LMS with scalable learning programs could include certifications and accreditation, content catalogs, media libraries, integrated events, and more. Through this, organizations can foster a culture of ongoing education and development for their employees, who can be trained on various aspects like – personal development, technology, human capital management, finance, analytics and reporting, and more.
One-Stop Technology Platform
To achieve high levels of interactivity and diversity, platforms today are designed to interact with various systems easily. For instance, a virtual lab built by one solution provider can easily be integrated into an LMS to allow users to learn the concepts in the LMS and then seamlessly experiment in the virtual labs. Today’s technological advances in AR and VR also enable virtual labs and simulator providers to offer learning opportunities like never before. While virtual labs will not replace the actual labs completely, they provide a reasonable degree of learning coverage, which can then be supplemented through blended learning that continues learning in the physical labs and classroom.
Similarly, learners can explore further learning possibilities with the hybrid model. They can utilize online platforms as one central place to manage their learning. They can maintain a record of what they’ve learned, how they are learning, and the process they are pursuing. Each learning path may be different and bound to have multiple stops and calibration points, including numerous certifications, learning scenarios, levels, and stages.
For instance, platforms like iPC Scholar 3.0 enable personalized learning experiences. They provide a central place where learners can maintain a record of their learnings, allowing consolidation of their entire learning path.
To summarize, eLearning platforms have evolved significantly over the last decade, they now cover almost everything from vocational training and academic courses to hobbies and beyond. It has become more accessible for several organizations, including publishers, educational institutions, and corporates, to offer secure, on-demand, intuitive and personalized learning experiences to their target groups.
To know more about the Impelsys platform solution for educationists, visit www.impelsys.com.
Authored by – Pranay Prasoon