Putting yourself first when it comes to learning

Justine Swain | 08/22/2018

One of the challenges we face in the eLearning industry is designing courses that will engage learners in such a way so that their learning experience is maximized. We want learners to learn, retain and recall the material presented to them, while having an enjoyable learning experience.

There are several theories aimed at improving knowledge transfer, such as reducing cognitive load by chunking information, and using different styles and techniques for presenting information.

But as a learner, our overall experience isn’t just about the course we are taking; it’s about our personal approach to taking the course.

We often cram any learning we complete into our working day, juggling our progress through the course with our other tasks, demands and priorities.

To get the best from any learning experience, we need to put ourselves first for a change, and there are some simple ways we can do this;

  1. Schedule time to take your eLearning

    Make sure that taking your eLearning course is not something you do in the middle of all your other tasks, meetings and calls you have on any given day.

    Schedule time in your calendar for the course, just like you would any other event or meeting. Give yourself the time in your schedule to complete the learning at a time that suits you.

    Set your calendar appointment to show you are busy for the allocated timeframe and stick to it. In the event a more important item comes up, move the scheduled learning time to another time slot; don’t just delete it. Keep your personal learning and development as a priority.
  1. Turn off your mobile, email, notifications and chat programs

    You have taken the step to allocate yourself time to learn, so give yourself the best learning environment possible. This doesn’t necessarily mean locking yourself away in a quiet room but is more about reducing distractions for the allocated learning period.

    Because eLearning is online, it means that the internet and all it has to offer is literally a click away. Close all other browser windows, turn off email notifications, put your phone on silent, and set your chat channel to ‘do not disturb’. These will all help to minimise the potential for interruptions.
  1. Let your co-workers know you are busy

    When it’s time to take your eLearning, you need to let your colleagues know you are busy, and cannot be distracted. A good pair of headphones can go a long way in both reducing distracting office noise, but also sending a message to your co-workers that you are busy and involved in something. Even a simple ‘Please do not disturb’ sign on your desk while you are taking your learning can help signal to your colleagues that you are occupied. If possible, you might consider taking your laptop to an empty conference room, library, or other area where you know it’s quiet.

    A quiet period, allocated to your personal development, with minimal interruptions will enable you to get the most from your eLearning time. You can focus on the course you are taking and can fully engage with the content without unnecessary distractions.

So, there's our three top tips on what learners can do to get the most out of their eLearning time. Maybe you have more? Tweet your tips to us at @omniplexelearn, we’d love to know your thoughts!

Justine Swain

Instructional Designer at Omniplex

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