So, you want to learn more about interactive learning, the approach to teaching that combines social networking with urban computing?
We understand. The learning and upskilling of employees are crucial to the success of any organization.
Because if you fail to do that? Well, it’s kind of like the army. Your competitors are training Navy SEALs, while your soldiers might look a little like this:
In the long run, we all know which organization will outlast the competition, don’t we?
So with that in mind, let’s dive into everything you need to know about interactive learning. You’ll discover:
- What is Interactive Learning in a Professional Setting?
- How Do Interactive Systems Work?
- What are the Benefits of Interactive Learning?
- Common Challenges of Interactive e-Learning
- Things to Consider When Providing Interactive Learning to Employees, and
- 4 Best Interactive Learning Tools for Business
What is Interactive Learning in a Professional Setting?
Traditional learning is a mostly one-way street. You listen, watch, read, and retain very little.
The people running the courses cannot ascertain how well the employees are learning beyond standardized tests. The classes are strictly theoretical, meaning there is a great difference between the real-world experience and the lecture-hall experience.
The effectiveness of such methods is questionable, and the return on investment is minimal.
Interactive learning in a professional setting seeks to address these issues and ensure the employees are being upskilled as effectively and successfully as possible.
This is what it looks like:
1. Interactive Learning Environments
They are systems with built-in software and, on occasion, specialized hardware designed to improve the learning experience.
Interactive learning environments are focused on offering meaningful content. If employees know that figuring out the material will help them perform better in their jobs, they are far more likely to engage with the course.
But it goes beyond that.
Traditional learning is a tightly-scheduled process that does not allow employees to deviate from the set path. Interactive learning is different.
Employees can explore the course material, jump ahead in the course if they want, and return later to continue from where they left off. By allowing employees to navigate the material at their own pace, companies can ensure each employee enjoys a learning experience best suited to their needs.
Furthermore, companies can collect feedback from their employees after completing the course. They can learn which aspects of the course worked as intended and which ones were difficult or dull.
In doing so, the company can continually improve the learning experience and improve its courses' effectiveness.
2. Interactive Learning Activities
We all know that in traditional learning, the activities include sitting behind a desk, scribbling notes, and trying to resist looking out the window to admire the birds.
Most of us were sick and tired of the process long before we stepped foot into high school.
We also know that this isn’t even close to being the optimum way to teach. But whereas entire educational systems may need a long time to adapt to these realities, individual companies can adopt improved methods far more quickly.
They have to. If for no other reason than because their competition is already doing it.
That means incorporating interactive learning activities into the courses.
So what do those look like?
How Do Interactive Learning Systems Work?
The main goal of interactive learning systems is to make creating courses as straightforward as possible. You don’t have to be an IT genius to figure it out. You only need a healthy level of software understanding and the willingness to learn.
Interactive learning systems allow for easy content creation. That means instead of working for months and months to create courses, you can make them in a matter of days.
That means interactive learning systems don’t just fix your time-related issues. They also develop a level of flexibility that means your courses can be updated or upgraded almost instantly.
Interactive learning systems can also be adapted for mobile devices. In the past, the learning came to an end the second the lecture finished. That is not the case anymore. Employees can take the courses home, study them at their leisure, and return to the material whenever needed.
Companies can automatically send training and updates to the employees whenever they wish. That way, the learning never ends. Employees can continuously improve their understanding of the course material and improve their performance.
Employee training goes from a special event that only occurs a few times a year to an ongoing process that never ends. Employees are always on top of new developments and improvements in business processes, technology, and so on.
Interactive learning systems also allow companies to monitor the progress of their employees. They were no more crossing your fingers and hoping for the best. Companies have complex data at their fingertips, allowing them to make informed decisions moving forward.
And finally, interactive learning systems can also be integrated with other platforms, meaning you don’t have to jump between a dozen management systems to stay on top of the learning process. You can simply monitor developments from a single platform, saving overseers a hundred headaches.
What Are the Benefits of Interactive Learning?
1. Better Decision-Making
You will never know until you try.
We’ve all heard that famous line, which is renowned because we can all agree it is true.
In the past, you simply had to drop people into the deep end of the pool to discover if they’d sink or swim. It was a cold-blooded approach, but in the absence of better alternatives, it was accepted as a sort of ‘rite of passage.’
That doesn’t have to be the case anymore.
Interactive learning allows employees to see their emotional reactions in various situations. They can familiarize themselves with the realities of a situation, examine their instinctive reactions, and work to improve them.
By using interactive learning to allow employees to face those problems in training, it is far more likely they will respond better when they get to work. After all, a high-pressure, high-stakes situation requires employees who have been prepared for it.
To say that some people just have it and some don’t might sound cool but consider how much potential you may be wasting by not giving your employees the best chance for success.
2. Better Feedback
Traditional learning leaves little room for feedback. You hear a lecture, and you retain what you can. Nobody checks how much the employee has taken away from the lesson.
Interactive learning demands participation and so tests the student. They are free to make mistakes, identify gaps in their understanding, and learn from them. The effectiveness of the lesson immediately skyrockets.
But it also helps the employers, who can see how employees approach particular tasks. They can identify which employees are best suited for a specific job and assign them accordingly.
3. Higher Engagement
This one’s a no-brainer.
Any lesson where the student can participate in the learning process, interact with the program and collaborate with the teacher is bound to improve the levels of engagement.
It’s how human beings work. Think of it like this: you'll probably drift off if someone doesn’t stop talking. But if they ask you a question, suddenly you’re paying attention.
That’s the difference between interactive learning and traditional learning.
4. Higher Retention
When you raise the engagement rate, the retention rate will increase.
When people are interested, when they are learning about a subject placed in an intriguing context, they remember much more than they would in a traditional lecture.
That is the power of interactive learning. Studies have shown that traditional learning leads to only a 5% retention rate after 24 hours. However, combining audio and visual learning, group learning, and practical learning can lead to a 90% retention rate after 24 hours.
5. Increased Motivation
Employees know why they’re attending a lecture: to learn. But that doesn’t make it any better.
Yet if the employer can communicate the benefits the learning will bring and at the same time make learning exciting and fun, the motivation will rise.
Few things feel better than doing something productive that is at the same time inherently exciting and fun. Interactive learning activities deliver just that.
6. Availability of Resources
Usually, employees or students attend a lecture and listen; when it is over, they go home. Their interaction with the course material is bound to the scheduling of the lecture.
But learning management systems allow them to take the course home. They can access it on their mobile phone whenever they want or need it.
They constantly access resources and can improve their knowledge daily instead of merely enhancing it during training.
Common Challenges of Interactive e-Learning
As is the case with any new technology or process that is being implemented into a business process, there are specific challenges organizations need to overcome if they wish the reap the benefits.
Here are the four main challenges to consider when implementing interactive learning.
1. Lack of Knowledge and Skills
In a recent survey, 27% of respondents claimed they don’t know enough to get the most out of e-learning technologies.
Companies often adopt e-learning technologies but place people without the necessary knowledge in charge of running them. That creates a disconnect between the potential of learning technology and the people who are blind to that potential, which is why they continue to under-utilize the features available to them.
Another problem is that executive branches often do not understand how learning can help the company reach its goals and improve the bottom line. Since they do not recognize the incentive for e-learning, they do not give it the attention it deserves.
2. Technical Issues
We all know this one, don’t we?
We've been familiar with the problem since we first saw our elementary school teachers panic when the projector unexpectedly died during a presentation.
The same problem can pop up when using interactive learning. To offset these potential issues, both the teacher and the student must have adequate technological know-how for the software to reach its potential.
By their very nature, these learning environments are subject to issues such as bandwidth glitches, network, and security. Any potential problems with the technology may result in the company needing outside customer support to fix it.
Another issue can be the lack of training on the part of the teachers, significantly if the company management dumps the task on an operational manager who isn’t educated for this type of work.
Technology is a tool that should never get in the way of human interaction.
Every learner still needs the ability to communicate with the lecturer as these types of interactions to have the most beneficial impact on their ability to learn.
Course designers should encourage dialogue and collaboration and use the technology to promote group work and knowledge exchange.
But if the technology is misused, it can stifle the learning process as the lecturers expect it to be the ultimate learning solution.
Engagement can be an issue regarding personal adaptation challenges. Often, people can have difficulty adapting to new teaching methods and need time to adjust.
But they want to. That’s the key here. 74% of employees are willing to learn new skills or re-train to remain employable.
Suppose the company they work for offers them an opportunity to improve their skills in an engaging and effective manner. In that case, the employees will grab that opportunity with both hands and thank the organization for their improved performance.
Things To Consider When Providing Interactive Learning to Employees
Learning doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process, and processes take time. Setting unrealistic deadlines can be the quickest way to ensure the learning course will not achieve its aims and end up wasting time.
Instead, would you spend two weeks and get nothing for your efforts or two months to achieve all your objectives?
People setting the deadlines must be aware of all the steps in the process to understand the work that ensures interactive learning delivers on its promises.
To achieve success in interactive learning, the software a company chooses must be the right fit for the company. It must have the features that meet their specific needs.
Interactive learning platforms provide an integrated platform where all the various types of courses can be uploaded, along with video and audio sessions.
But beyond the service itself, the company must offer good customer service to ensure any issues are dealt with speedily.
At the end of the day, any process a company undertakes must make financial sense.
With that in mind, the cost of interactive learning must be sense from an ROI standpoint.
First, we must consider the costs of not training employees. 94% of employees say they would stay at the same company if it invested in their learning and training. If those people quit, how much will it cost the company to hire new employees and onboard them? And with that in mind, 79% of employees say when searching for a job, it’s essential that the employer offers formal training.
The U.S. Navy conducted a cost-avoidance study, comparing an 8-hour training exercise using real equipment to the same training using 3D interactive simulation. They concluded that their investment in PC-based training saved them $2,96 million, which was on the first exercise!
Everyday companies might not see such extreme examples, but the point stands.
Finally, consider the benefits training can provide. How many issues could be resolved if your employees performed better in a given situation? How much revenue could be gained, and how many expenses were avoided?
4 Best Interactive Learning Tools for Business
Tovuti offers a next-generation learning management system that provides the chance to:
- Build unlimited courses, and lessons
- Offers coaching support for all new clients
- Create reports and track learner progress
- An open API that allows for integration with other platforms, and
- It’s white-labeled, meaning you can change the logos, colors, and even URL to match your branding
Tovuti offers specialized pricing depending on your company’s needs.
It is the best LMS platform, but don’t take our word for it. Here is what its customers have to say.
And we can talk about the positive reviews about the customers we like, but is there anything that bothers them about the Tovuti LMS system?
How’s that for conclusive?
360Learning is a learning management system that offers its customers:
- A chance to create a learning course in as little as 17 minutes
- Course templates
- Video recording
- Course efficiency tracking
- Integration with other platforms
This is where you’ll find what their customers have to say about them. Check out the things they might not like, just as we did with Tovuti.
3. Open LMS
Open LMS is also a learning management system. They offer their users:
- Open-source API that allows users to customize the platform
- Tracking and analysis of learner progress
- Advanced workflow automation
- End-to-end learning services
Open LMS provides a good service, but customers sometimes complain of long waiting times for new plugins to be installed, as well as difficulty navigating the pages.
You can find more reviews of the company here.
What is An Interactive Teaching Method?
To best understand the interactive teaching method, let’s compare it to traditional teaching, shall we?
What are the Examples of Interactive Learning Games for Business?
- Cohort: A business game that simulates a change of management. Players must develop influencing skills and an understanding of reputational power as they try to win over the key players in a company.
- Chapter: A game simulates a team project process as you try to win over your team members and get them to operate at a high level.
- XSIM: A business game that offers the chance for players to develop leadership skills in their role as members of the executive branch of a successful entertainment company.
Interactive environments and interactive activities are the future. For decades, people have complained about the teaching methods used in the educational system. Interactive learning goes a long way to solving those problems.
In today’s shifting world, a company’s ability to ensure its employees are properly trained is integral to its survival. A proper training system can future-proof the company and help it remain flexible enough to withstand potential disruptions.
Interactive learning is a critical development in employee training and is here to stay. By raising the effectiveness of learning courses, companies no longer have an excuse to avoid training their employees.
To fail is to surrender the future to the competition and ensure the company itself will fall by the wayside.