You will hear everyone discussing on how to create an engaging eLearning course, yet, there has been a lot of debate over what exactly engagement is all about. How can learners be engaged and motivated to learn? So, to answer the query here we have a few different ways listed to engage learners better.
To make it simple to understand, there are two ways to keep learners engaged
- Passive- providing information of the course to the learner
- Active- allowing learners to use the information for making decisions
Both types of engagement have their own relevance and importance in the eLearning course.
Let’s have a look at Passive vs. Active Engagement
As we have already discussed, passive engagement allows sharing of information with the learner while active engagement allows learner to actually use the information in making decisions.
Passive Engagement gives access to Information
Books, newspapers and television are all means of effective passive engagement. We get all the information through all these sources yet we are not doing anything with it at least not actively.
So, it cannot be assumed that passive engagement does not add value to the learner’s knowledge, obviously you do gain out the information being conveyed although passively. Only you cannot do anything about it actively. But even passive engagement can be made interesting – why just stick to bullet points and mainstream presentation ground rules. Rather add smart arts, creative clip arts and element of audio visuals to make the course interactive.
Active Engagement Helps process Information
Active eLearning courses allow learners to use the conveyed information in taking decisions. Say, you incorporate a case study based assessment wherein you need to come up with solutions to the problem stated. Therefore, active engagement primarily focuses on providing hands on experience to learners of the replicated situations. Simulations could be an active mode of engaging learner in decision making too.
There is always the right time and place of incorporating passive and active engagement:
When information needs to be delivered, passive engagement is considered.
When all the learner needs is to be made aware of some information, passive engagement is useful. eLearning courses provide online support to learners anytime anywhere, at their convenience.
Furthermore, an eLearning course is not just confined to mainstream text and bullets, rather it can be made creative using audios, visuals, pictures that make the whole look and feel of the course more appealing and customized to the learners requirement.
When information needs to be put to immediate use, active engagement is considered:
The key essence of designing active course is to see how well learner can apply the information to replicated situations. Immediate use of information helps convey on spot feedback to learners.
Well irrespective of the type of engagement you incorporate, the bottom line is to impart training and convey relevant information learners need. Depending on the need the type of engagement can be decided, so, it’s an either-or decision.