In the best commercially available e-Learning and digitized CD-ROM programs, video, graphics, and audio do most of the teaching. Experts agree, and the research proves, that active multisensory training is vastly more effective than passive acquisition of information acquired through text or lectures.

Good e-Learning and digitized CD-ROM training programs are also competency-based and real-world in nature. Trainees learn how to perform “hard” or “soft” skills, and they are taught these skills within the context of relevant job or life situations. Being able to see how newly acquired skills or knowledge can improve one’s life is the best motivation for adult e-learning-maffei2learners.

Driven by the business sector’s need to show return on investment, good e-Learning and digitized CD-ROM are also measurable. The courses have testing elements that assess a student’s incoming skill or knowledge level, and re-evaluate progress upon completion. This same testing element also allows retention to be measured six months, or more, after completion of the initial training.

Interactivity is one of the most critical factors for the success of e-Learning and digitized CD-ROM programs. Almost every expert on learning agrees that doing and experiencing are key elements in the acquisition of new skills and knowledge. Well-designed interactive e-Learning and digitized CD-ROMs require learners to be active participants in their own learning process, instead of being uninvolved listeners in receiving information in a passive environment.

At the heart of the success of interactive multisensory training programs is “learner control.” Most high quality programs are designed and used as individualized, one-on-one instruction, with the learner controlling the sequence and path of learning.

E-Learning and digitized CD-ROM programs that imbed flexible and nonlinear design can also accommodate a wide variety of learning styles and ability levels. Slow learners, for instance, can spend more time reviewing and practicing difficult material, while fast learners are not penalized by boredom or frustration under an externally imposed pace or path. Such flexible, nonlinear programs can also deliver instruction in varying depths so that they can be used for different purposes.

There is nothing yet as effective for learning and retention. Knowledgeably designed e-Learning and digitized CD-ROMs are where it’s at today.

More on Tuesday – – – – –

— Bill Walton, Founder of ITC Learning