Gamified Microlearning Activities: How To Boost The Impact Of Your Corporate Training.
In the last few years, you would have seen two significant trends in online corporate training:
- A Wider Acceptance Of Gamification For Serious Learning
Today, the use of gamification cuts across most of the corporate training needs ranging from induction and onboarding, soft skills training, professional skills training, application simulations training to compliance training.
- An Extensive Adoption Of Microlearning
From its early avatar as performance support or just-in-time learning aids, today microlearning based training is being used across the majority of corporate training needs. It is being used to offer formal training, and it continues to be the preferred choice for job aids/learning aids. It has also made inroads into supporting ILT/VILT.
With the maturing of these techniques, a logical extension is to leverage on the combination of both approaches.
In this article, I outline one of the ways through which you can use the combination. I outline how you can use gamified microlearning activities to boost the impact of your corporate training.
Before moving on to the specifics of the combination (gamified microlearning activities), let me outline the strengths of microlearning and gamification techniques for online training.
What Is Microlearning?
Microlearning is short, focused, bite-sized training that is typically 2-7 minutes long. It is not eLearning lite. Instead, it is designed to be a nugget that meets a specific learning outcome.
The microlearning nuggets can be designed to be consumed as a stand-alone nugget (as a job aid/learning aid designed to help learners at the moment of their need), or as part of a learning path featuring several such nuggets (typically for formal training). The microlearning nuggets can also be used to support ILT/VILT programs.
Microlearning is typically offered in the mobile learning format (although, it will support other devices too), enabling learners to consume the learning on the device of their choice and on the go.
It features high-impact, engaging formats notably, animated videos, interactive videos, infographics, interactive infographics, and so on.
What Is The Relevance Of Microlearning Today?
The primary trigger for the adoption of microlearning was the need to meet the challenge of diminishing attention spans. But, this is not the only factor in its favor.
As we see a change in the pattern of how learners want to learn, microlearning based training provides a great way to match the learners’ preferences to learn.
- It resonates with learners on account of the fact that it can be consumed on the go, and it will help them achieve a specific learning goal.
- In a world where we need to multi-task all the time, microlearning based training can be consumed in the midst of other commitments.
What Is Gamification And The Value It Brings In For Learners And Businesses?
Gamification is the use of principles and key elements of gaming to deliver the required learning objectives.
Unlike traditional eLearning, the operative words in this approach are “fun as you learn.” Driven by a narrative, the learning path is interspersed with learning assets, challenges, levels, instant feedback, scores, badges, and leaderboards.
A highly engaging approach, gamification for serious learning helps L&D teams achieve learning outcomes through a more engaging journey. An effective gamification strategy provides higher completion rates as well a better recall and retention. It can be used with equal success to apply the learning at work as well as help learners upskill.
What Are The Benefits Of Gamified Microlearning Activities?
Gamified microlearning activities are one of the approaches that can help you leverage on the combined value of gamification and microlearning.
They offer the following benefits:
- Gamified microlearning activities are aligned to the 70/20/10 model of learning. You can use microlearning gamified activities for formal training, for performance support (just-in-time learning aids), and to facilitate proficiency gain. The nuggets can be designed to offer highly experientialtraining. You can also leverage on social or collaborative learning.
- Gamified microlearning activities offer short, focused tasks leading to learning, problem-solving, application of learning, practice, proficiency gain, and so on.
- Gamified microlearning activities offer high engagement as they provide a highly relevant and immersive learning experience. As a result, you will see:
a. Better completion rates
b. High retention and recall
How Can You Use Gamified Microlearning Activities To Boost The Impact Of Your Corporate Training?
I recommend a simple 3-step process that you can use to leverage on the combined power of microlearning and gamification.
Step 1: Identify The Microlearning Nuggets That Can Be Designed To Deliver Diverse Learning Outcomes
You can use them to offer the following (individually or in a path where you can combine one or more):
- Collaborative learning
Step 2: Depending On The Nature Of The Learning Outcome, Design The Nuggets In Different Formats
For instance, you can have different categories based on what you want to achieve. These could include nuggets that learners could use to:
- Watch and learn
- Test their knowledge
- Explore (curated to enhance learning or look at related information)
Step 3: Combine Gamification And Microlearning Techniques
The combination of gamification and microlearning techniques can be done in multiple ways.
I am outlining 4 examples that show how you can use gamified microlearning activities.
1. Offer A Personalized And Gamified Learning Path
Microlearning nuggets can be woven into a highly relevant and personalized learning path. You can either gamify the learning path or have individual nuggets that feature gamification.
This example of gamified microlearning activities features:
- A personalized learning path.
- All microlearning topics have points associated with each of them.
- A dashboard is accessible to the learners to view their progress through the topics and their performance in achieving points, badges, and expertise levels.
2. Gamified Incentives To Enhance Performance
The gamified learning journey can offer a personalized performance indicator that can aid learners to focus on further improvement. You can nudge the learners to achieve this through gamification elements (points, badges, and recognition).
This example of gamified microlearning activities features:
- An emotion meter and stars achieved at various stages of the gamified activity.
- Through the performance indicator, the required cues are provided to learners on the improvement areas so that they can gain more points and achieve badges.
3. Real-Time Feedback And Gamified Assets As Recommendations (Based On Learner Behavior) Can Help Learners Improve Their Performance
In this endeavor:
- The remediation or reinforcement nuggets can be offered in a microlearning format that can be gamified.
- The challenges can be offered as microlearning nuggets that have gamified scenarios and assessments.
- The practice sessions to improve the skills can be gamified microlearning nuggets (can be offered in a stand-alone mode or connected through a gamified learning path).
This example of gamified microlearning activities features:
- A microlearning based learning path consisting of various types of nuggets, including gamified practice activities and scenarios.
- It also offers recommended learning nuggets based on learner performance/behavior.
4. Curated Assets With Gamified Incentives
Besides offering the microlearning nuggets for formal training as well as job aids or learning aids, you can also offer curated assets. To encourage learners to go through them, you can use gamification elements such as points and badges.
This example of gamified microlearning activities features:
- Curated assets that provide more information and deeper knowledge on the topics covered in the main learning path.
- These too have points allocated to them for completion and adds to the overall points tally for the learner.
As you would have noted, the combination of microlearning and gamification in the format of gamified microlearning activities can be used in many ways to boost the impact of your corporate training.
In this article, I have touched upon a few facets of how you can leverage on this combination. In this endeavor, you are limited only by your imagination.
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Ways To Use Microlearning To Train Your Multi-Generational Workforce
In 2019, more than ever before, L&D teams are facing the challenge to train employees across divergent profiles, given the multi-generational workforce which we see in most organizations. A typical team today may comprise of employees across 4 generations:
- Baby Boomers
- Gen X
- Gen Y
- Gen Z
It is quite likely that certain industries and organizations may even have a fifth one; the Traditionalists.
The multi-generational workforce presents a challenge of creating trainings for each of these profiles. Not only should training excite each one of them, but it should also provide the optimal mode of learning to each profile. Adding to the challenge, it is a fact that an approach that would excite one profile may be frivolous for another, and so on.
How Can You Address This Challenge?
Despite notable differences, there are several commonalities across generations. For instance,
- They all want to learn so that they can perform better.
- They want feedback that can help them improve further.
- They want to be part of a continuous learning process.
So, the answer lies in using a flexible approach that would excite and engage each profile of your multi-generational workforce. One of the possible options uses microlearning-based training to train your multi-generational workforce and offset this challenge.
In this article, I show you what microlearning strategies can help you train your multi-generational workforce.
What Are The Common Factors That Excite All Profiles And Can Be Used To Design Training For Your Multi-Generational Workforce?
As I have highlighted earlier, despite differences in each profile of the multi-generational workforce, there are several common aspects as well. L&D teams need to begin the exercise by taking note of what works with most of the employees.
With our experience at EI Design, we see the following wishlist across customers, geographies, and industry verticals. Most learners (across the multi-generational workforce) want the following aspects in their training:
- The training should be personalized.
- The learners should have the flexibility to pick up training “anytime and anywhere”.
- The training must be interesting and should be offered in new formats (not the obvious formats).
- The training should mesh with their lifestyle and should allow them the flexibility to learn effortlessly during their day, for example, while commuting, during waiting periods, or over the weekends. They do not want to block large chunks of time during work to accomplish this.
- The training should feature short, focused learning assets that can be consumed “on the go”.
- The training should be easy to access, and it should be available within the workflow, exactly at the moment of their need,, rather than having to access it over the LMS all the time.
- They should have the flexibility to consume on the device of their choice, and they should be able to move seamlessly across devices.
- The training should have the required mix of learning and reinforcements.
- The training should also have triggers to nudge the learners to review and should have room to practice.
- Based on each learner’s performance, there should be recommendations for further learning or remediation aids.
- The learning journey should provide a sense of achievement and recognition.
- The learning environment should provide learners with avenues to contribute and be recognized for this.
What Strategies Would Work To Design Training For Your Multi-Generational Workforce?
From the common factors, we can derive the training and learning strategies that would work across your multi-generational workforce, and the following aspects clearly stand out:
- Interesting and new formats
- Learning on the go
- Personalized learning
- Flexibility to pull learning nuggets by choice rather than be pushed by mandated trainings
- Just-in-time learning
- Room for collaboration and social learning
- Self-directed learning
Microlearning-based training for your multi-generational workforce, delivered across devices (notably, smartphones and tablets to laptops or desktops) provides an effective approach to meet the diverse expectations of each profile.
Microlearning based training features short focused learning nuggets, often 2-7 minutes long but always associated with a specific learning outcome. Designed to be delivered in high-impact formats, it facilitates a highly sticky learning experience.
You can use microlearning to map to each of the multi-generational workforce profile’s training needs as:
- Formal or structured learning
- Performance Support Tools (job aids or learning aids)
- Support to ILT
To meet the expectations of the diverse profiles, you can offer microlearning for your multi-generational workforce as:
- A standalone nugget, meeting a specific learning need as a just-in-time learning aid or job aid. This could support an ILT program or a traditional eLearning program.
- A series of nuggets in a learning path (for formal training as well as for reinforcements and practice).
Furthermore, to meet each of the multi-generational workforce profile’s training needs:
- With the microlearning approach for your multi-generational workforce, you can design the nuggets in multiple formats. You can opt for apps for learning, Video-based learning, dDecision making scenarios, interactive PDFs, and interactive infographics and so on. This ensures that the expectations of each profile are met.
- Additionally, you can offer the same learning in different formats so that employees have the flexibility to use a format that works best for them. For example, a video-based nugget can also be made available as a downloadable PDF.
You can use the following 10 creative strategies to offer microlearning-based training that would appeal to your multi-generational workforce:
- Personalized learning paths (based on proficiency or interest)
- Gamified learning paths
- Gamified quizzes
- Gamified challenges for proficiency validation and practice
- Video-based learning
- Interactive video-based learning
- Scenario-based learning
- Story-based learning
- New immersive approaches: AR, VR, MR, and wearable tech
- Leverage on AI to recommend further learning
It is given that each profile will embrace these learning strategies differently. Yet, microlearning-based training for your multi-generational workforce does provide an effective approach to address the common factors and the unique aspects that a given profile may require.
I hope this article does give you some pointers that you can use to offer a microlearning-based approach to train your multi-generational workforce.
Originally Published in: https://www.eidesign.net/how-to-use-microlearning-to-train-your-multi-generational-workforce/
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A few of my recent blog posts have started with a lyric from a track I’ve listened to on the radio or on my iPod. This is no different. This morning it’s the turn of the 1993 hit ‘Moving on up’ by M People.
‘Cause I’m movin’ on up, you’re movin’ on out
Movin’ on up, nothin’ can stop me
Movin’ on up, you’re movin’ on out
Time to break free, nothin’ can stop me, yeah
While I’m sure the original message of the track has nothing to do with my work, January or the winter blues, it did make me think back to the last 31 days of January. For me it’s about a tough (and very long) January moving on, a new (and cold) February arriving and being able to put some things behind me and concentrate on some new, invigorating work to come.
Here are a few thoughts and articles I’ve read and/or talked about:
- Foldable phones … will these have the same hype afforded to curved TVs, and eventually be seen for what they are: technologically advanced, but actually pretty useless?
- I started following and reading articles by Melissa Milloway on LinkedIn, in her series ‘This Side Up’. Her latest one is a list of seven resources she finds useful when looking at and thinking about eLearning.
- Details of the Senior CMALT (#SCMALT) scheme was released in January, which is of direct interest to me in my new role(s) … it is “aimed at more experienced professionals and those whose role includes management/leadership or research focus.”
- I had a couple of days intensive workshops with colleagues from a partner institution at the Australian Deakin University, working on our joint fully-online PG Cert in Entrepreneurship. Wonderful to meet face-to-face and spend time with people who so far have only been on webinars, skype calls or emails. While working and collaborating remotely together can be very productive and useful (see below), nothing beats being in the same room!
- The topic of remote working, working from home, or ‘location independent working (LIW)’ keeps coming up again and again. The recent bad weather (by the UKs standards) has meant the need to be flexible in whether myself or colleagues can get to work, so we need to carefully consider how we’ll continue to work and collaborate when not in the same room.
- This from Australia, posted to the WonkHE website, discusses the themes and benefits (or pitfalls?) of microcredentials – “The world of education is changing and changing fast. The era of the microcredential is upon us and now governments and regulators have to scramble to catch up. But as far as I can see, it’s good news for consumers who will not be hidebound to a particular institution or qualification and will be able to mix and match courses to suit their interests, budgets and emerging careers.”
- I thought about meetings, and whether they’re always necessary or useful. What are your thoughts?
- Is there a correlation between learning design and student wellbeing?
- Reading Lorna Campbell’s post learning to love your blog, which led me to revisit an old idea, and . …
- A new idea for a series of blog posts, maybe one a month or maybe even more regular. More soon as I flesh out the ideas …
- My last highlight is this, posted by Jane Hart, about three smart things top performers do to stand out at work.
How was your January?
Learning strategies have been developed for the past few years to adapt to the changing learner dynamics. Organizations are increasingly making use of eLearning videos in their corporate trainings to create a better impact on learners. Specifically, using Microlearning techniques in combination with eLearning videos amplifies the impact to a whole new level.
Microlearning Videos are short and focused and can be used as a standalone nugget that offers a specific learning takeaway; it can also be utilized as part of a longer learning path. Learners favor visual formats, such as videos, over plain text. When paralleled with other media, videos are known to create more engaging and sticky learning experiences for learners. Videos can create narratives that can be easily related to by learners, and the usage of Video Based Learning is shown to generate higher recall and retention. Microlearning can be combined with videos to offer learners a just-in-time learning format and can also be a part of a bigger learning path that can be consumed in shorter nuggets. Additionally, Microlearning Videos can be used to offer learning aids that help learners exactly at the moment of their need.
Here are 6 amazing Microlearning Video examples that organizations can implement in their training strategies.
Investing in Microlearning Videos can have multiple positive results for both the organization as well as the learner. Microlearning Videos help L&D teams with agile training development and deployment. Organizations can pick from a wide array of tools that enable quick development. They can also quickly update and re-deploy these microlearning videos with frequent information changes/updates. The Videos achieve a specific learning outcome in a fraction of time, offer higher recall and retention, are less expensive to develop, and hence result in better ROI.
From the learners’ perspective, Microlearning Videos offer an engaging and immersive learning experience. They can be taken on the go, and short but focused bites ensure faster assimilation. They offer the required support exactly at the moment of the learners’ need, and they can learn in accordance with their varied learning needs including learning something new, diving deeper into a given aspect, solving a specific problem, practicing to gain proficiency, and applying the acquired learning.
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Compliance training is mandatory and crucial for organizations. However, although it is essential and cannot be avoided, no employee loves it. In this article, I showcase how you can use microlearning to make your compliance training engaging.
Microlearning In Compliance Training: 5 Possible Approaches With Examples
Policies, procedures, and guidelines (from government and regulatory bodies) are typically the reasons to have compliance training. The training is crucial for organizations and needs 100% conformance.
However, even though it is a mandatory training, employees have no intrinsic motivation to take it. Also, more often than not, the compliance trainings are rendered in a rather obvious (preachy), prescriptive (boring) format.
But, this should not be the case. There are several ways to create an engaging compliance training using immersive learning strategies and supplement the primary compliance training with additional measures that will keep the learners cued in. Increasingly, microlearning-based techniques are being used to enhance the impact of compliance trainings.
In this article, I show you how the usage of microlearning in compliance training can provide you a wide range of options that can help you meet your mandate.
What Is Microlearning, And Why Is It the Flavor Of The Season?
Microlearning based training is the flavor of the season and for several reasons.
- It uses bite-sized learning nuggets (between 2-5 mins long and normally not exceeding 7 mins).
- However, microlearning is not just eLearning lite (it is not just having shorter pieces instead of a longer run length course), but each microlearning nugget is designed to meet a specific learning outcome.
Microlearning would have the following key characteristics:
- It provides learners the flexibility to consume content across devices (ranging from desktops/laptops to smartphones and tablets).
- It can be rendered as a stand-alone nugget, but is more often a part of a learning path.
- It uses rich media formats (notably videos), and different nuggets in a given learning path can have different formats that can present the content more effectively.
- It is action-oriented and encourages the usage of varied formats to learn, practice, solve a problem, and apply the learning on the job.
How Can Usage Of Microlearning In Compliance Training Add Value To The Compliance Mandate?
Microlearning can be used in compliance training to effectively provide following offerings:
- Higher engagement.
- Higher completion rates (within the stipulated time).
- Long-term retention.
- Triggers to behavioral change (leading to the right behavior, in line with the compliance mandate).
Specifically, the benefits it offers to the learners are:
- Flexibility to take the training on the go.
- Flexibility to take the training across devices and on the device of their choice.
The compliance teams can use the microlearning-based approach to create higher impact training’s through the following two approaches:
For the main compliance courses: Use the diversity of available formats in microlearning to offer courses that are engaging and create sticky learning experiences.
Support/supplement the main compliance courses: Use the core strength of the microlearning technique to:
- Connect with the learners prior to the formal compliance training (create awareness of the significance of the compliance training and their role in meeting the mandate, and so on).
- Provide room for reinforcement or practice (post the formal compliance training).
- Create “communities of compliance practice” to sustain the compliance focus and keep the learners cued in (rather than the discrete connections through annual compliance trainings).
How Can You Uplift The Compliance Training Mandate?
We have adopted an integrated approach to compliance training to create higher impact, as shown here:
- Adopt strategies that create a sticky learning experience: Over the years, we have worked closely with the compliance teams of our customers in creating engaging courses that feature learning strategies including gamification, scenario-based learning, storytorials, and so on. These approaches have helped us create highly sticky learning experiences.
- Supplement the formal compliance training through microlearning: One of the aspects we have used extensively is the usage of microlearning to support the compliance program (pre- or post-formal training). This includes campaigns that include newsletters, posters, and teaser videos prior to the formal training, as well as reinforcements post the formal training program that keeps the learners connected to the compliance mandate.
- Redesign the formal compliance training in the microlearning format: Increasingly, the compliance programs are being designed as a learning journey featuring multiple micro learning nuggets.
Here Is A List Of 5 Possible Approaches That Show You How You Can Use Micro learning In Compliance Training:
Example 1: Micro learning In Compliance Training
An integrated approach to compliance training – This is a case study where we used various formats of microlearning at various stages of the training life cycle to instill the spirit of compliance into learners.
- Prior to the training, we used an animated video format to introduce the compliance mandate and build awareness.
- During the training, we used short scenario-based nuggets like “Choose the right path” where the learner was put into a situation and had to make choices, which made learning more experiential.
- Post training, short learning summaries were shared with the learners in the form of sharp info-graphics that provide key takeaways from the training.
a. Animated video: Introduction to the concept
b. Online course: Overview with a focus on “Doing it the right way”
c. Poster: Sharp summary
Pre-Formal Training (Assets To Support The Formal Compliance Training)
Example 2: Microlearning In Compliance Training
Using infographics – Infographics can serve as a great microlearning asset to provide training overviews before the formal training commences.
This example of training on data security shows how we used relevant infographics in a scrollable webpage format to generate interest and provide a prelude to the actual training.
Example 3: Microlearning In Compliance Training
Using videos – Videos are a very high-impact medium, and they can be used to support compliance trainings in many ways (as teasers prior to key programs and as reinforcement post the main program).
This example was a training on workplace safety, and it was important for the participants to understand the adverse consequences of non-compliance. An animated video that presented real-life situations and crisp messages to draw attention was used to drive the learners to take the right action.
Post-Formal Training (Assets To Support The Formal Compliance Training)
Example 4: Microlearning In Compliance Training
Reinforcement video – Featuring the whiteboard animation technique
Post-training refreshers are critical to helping learners retain the key takeaways of the training better. Microlearning helps us do this in various formats, significantly through the use of videos.
Here, we used a whiteboard animation video approach that uses hand-drawn graphics animated with synced audio. It helped provide novelty to the whole viewing experience of this short nugget on the key takeaways of a “Conflict at workplace” training.
Example 5: Microlearning In Compliance Training
Cheat sheets – Featuring the kinetic text-based technique
Cheat sheets in the form of checklists, best practices, and guidelines can serve as great takeaways from any compliance training course. These short microlearning nuggets can be in the form of infographics, simple text, and supporting image formats or animation videos.
This is an example of a cheat sheet that shows a checklist using the kinetic text-based animation video approach that the learners can access on their smartphones (in line with the compliance mandate).
I hope this article provides insights on how you can use microlearning for compliance training. As the featured examples show, you can use microlearning to support the primary compliance training. But this is not all; you can use the microlearning based approach to craft your primary compliance training too.
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