Jessica joined RWA in 2018, having graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Film Studies. Her role as a content designer involves developing new and engaging e-learning modules as well as assisting in the creation of articles for Insight.
When researching e-learning trends online, you are likely to come across the same ideas and strategies promoted repeatedly, often promising to dramatically transform your team's learning experience overnight.
The truth about e-learning is that there are no easy routes to success – there is no single magic solution that will transform your employees into stellar learners or experts in their field. Instead, there is a whole range of different tools and techniques that in combination can drive impressive changes and deliver high-quality outcomes. A true learning and development platform provides support to allow firms to find the most effective balance of tools that work best with their learners. The first step towards achieving this is through content curation.
The concept of content curation is very similar to that of an art exhibition. The curator works around a central theme and chooses elements to help explain the theme (whether these are web pages, learning modules, activities, or even artworks), presenting them in a coherent format for learners. This might be as a library of resources that learners can dip into as required or may follow a more formal structure such as a learning pathway.
The benefit of this approach is that learners can be assured that the content has undergone some form of quality assurance and can be confident that the information presented is accurate and reliable. For curators and training teams, it means that the range of resources available to learners can be extended quickly and cost-effectively without having to develop large volumes of material in-house. However, it also brings a responsibility to regularly review content to ensure that it is still relevant and accurate.
There are many opportunities for training teams to curate content on the Development Zone using the custom content and programmes catalogues as well as the relevant tools associated with each one:
Gamification, or taking aspects of computer games and applying them to training content is often met with negative responses from managers. However, incorporating key elements such as rewards and status points to reflect successful mastery of topics can be a simple and effective way of boosting learner engagement and celebrating success within organisations.
Gamification can also be extended into specific topics, for example, by presenting learners with complex scenarios and encouraging them to make appropriate decisions to resolve situations. As with many approaches, using elements of gamification judiciously can help engage learners without trivialising the learning process or the topics being delivered.
You can find examples of gamification across the Development Zone, such as the badges awarded for completing topics, or the interactive scenarios in the main content catalogue such as the ‘FCA Conduct Rules Scenarios’ series.
Blended learning has been a popular theme for several years and reflects the desire to retain some form of direct interaction with learners alongside self-contained e-Learning. Traditionally, it has referred to a mixture of in-person and online activities, although it is now more widely being used to reflect a mixture of “live” and pre-prepared learning, with the live element incorporating learning across multiple locations using video conferencing tools rather than events in a single physical location.
The Development Zone supports both styles of blended learning, with support for managing offline events (i.e., face-to-face meetings), and for assessing the outcome of offline tasks (by submitting a document of evidence for review/feedback), as well as allowing pre-recorded webinars to be uploaded to the platform for learners to refer back to when they need it.
Learner analytics also provide insight into the behaviour of learners both individually and as a group and help organisations judge the effectiveness of their training and refine the approaches and content used. They ensure that the organisation as a whole gets the best possible return on investment.
The curation of e-learning content does not end once it has been established. In the fast-paced insurance industry, continuous updates and improvements are essential. Encourage employee feedback and use analytics to measure the impact and success of learning initiatives.
Users of the Development Zone platform can access our range of courses to get started on curating your own learner journeys.
For those not currently using the system, you can find out more and request a free 14-day trial here: https://mydevelopment.zone/#getStarted
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