5 Strategies for Designing Brain-Friendly e-Learning Courses

Brain Friendly Courses - 2013 Nov 20

Ever wondered what’s going on in your learners’ brains as they’re working through your online training course? We have a few answers that will help you make your e-Learning course more brain-friendly and effective!

Follow these 5 tips to create successful e-Learning—designed especially for the brain:

Engage them, and they’ll learn.
Learning is more effective if it’s done actively, rather than passively. This is because active learning stimulates a variety of areas in the brain and promotes memory. The best way to make learning active is to make it engaging, like by having students experience what they’re learning for themselves. For tips on getting your learners active and engaged in your online training, read this blog on How to Make Compliance Training More Fun.

Connect the dots.
Creating associations between concepts can increase our ability to remember details by as much as 40%. According to cognitive scientists, learning is all about connecting the dots and combining new patterns. But what does this look like in your online training course? First, you can organize your course in a way that takes learners from one concept to the next in the most logical way for building on previously learned knowledge. That way, your learners aren’t just learning random bits of content. Instead, the content flows smoothly—and all the dots are connected.

Be down-to-earth.
Use conversational language to engage your learners. Research shows that learning programs are more successful when they engage the learner directly by using first and second person language (“I” and “you” communication). In addition, they yield better learning than the same programs that use more formal language. Using characters to instruct learners can also provide knowledge in a down-to-earth format. Another way is adding humor, which is tricky, so be sure to read The Dos and Don’ts of Using Humor in eLearning.

Motivate them!
Motivation may be a bigger factor in learning than you may think. For example, some studies have found that motivation can be even more important than IQ or learning styles for learning a new skill. Check out these 5 Ways to Motivate Your e-Learners for tips on boosting your employees’ learning.

Less is more.
Studies show that unrelated, excess media and visuals can actually be distracting to your learners, instead of supporting your content.
Your course should be interesting—not distracting. For example, think twice before adding music to instructional segments. Check out 5 Ways to Grab Your Learner’s Attention for some great techniques that are successful but not over-the-top.

For more tips on the brain, learning and creating awesome online training courses, subscribe to the Lectora® e-Learning Blog!

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Christie Wroten writes for the Lectora e-Learning Blog, sharing Lectora tips and researching the latest industry trends. You can also find her articles on eLearning Industry, Learning Solutions Magazine, Learning Technologies Blog and HR.com. Christie graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University, where she studied English and Writing. When Christie’s not writing blog posts and e-Learning news, she enjoys piano, guitar, interior design and sushi.

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