Education is slowly changing and transforming. Knowledge is no longer “locked” into the classrooms and libraries. You can now have thousands of books, courses and materials in one small device you can carry around in your pocket. But just having access to the knowledge is not the whole game. There has to be someone who can teach that knowledge the correct way.
So again, people have to resort to visiting training centers. Now, this is perfectly fine and can be very useful. But not everyone can afford it for various reasons. On the other hand some trainers think it is not ideal to teach from a distance and prefer an eye-to-eye approach. But in reality online training can be an effective learning platform as much as any other type of teaching. It all depends on both the type of course and there must be enough trust between the trainer and trainees that the work will get done.
One of the main negatives about online training that has been circulating is that this type of training lacks the human touch and can be too machine like which can decrease motivation. According to Ed Sattar, who is the CEO of 360training.com, there are several ways to “humanize learning”. Amongst them is to set up chatrooms to allow learners to discuss during the lessons or set up social media groups for the same purpose when the training is not necessarily in real time. Finally, instructors have to be reachable online to provide additional help.
This actually brings out another great advantage of online learning. It can be individualized. People have different learning style, different preferences. At the very least you can have people be able to go through each lesson at their own pace and during a time they feel productive. To prevent people slacking you can set a firm deadline – for example each lesson has to be completed within two days and everybody must check-in online when they are done. Or, you can set up a deadline for the entire course – for example a week. Whatever suits your plan better.
Another benefit of online training is that you can give learners more freedom in the way they mix and match the modules. If somebody knows more than enough about one topic, why should he or she have to waste time going through a lesson for it, when that time can be invested for the module they are much more interested in.
Trainers can also benefit the more in-depth communication with the trainees that need it via emails and other forms at their own pace without having to stop lessons or distract themselves from another job they are doing. All of this will also give trainers a better idea which learners are proactive and which need that additional push to get into it more.
All of this turns online learning into a continuous process that lasts throughout the day giving learners additional bits and pieces of information, instead of forcing them to focus on the task only during the actual lessons. This, Sattar writes in a blog, the focus is on learning not simply delivering content.