Have you ever offered an elearning professional development course and when you go through the data you are somewhat disappointed? I know I have. You might see that many users performed well, some did just enough to get the credit while some turned in “junk” at the last minute before the course closed. Overall, the course accomplished what you set out to do, but you want the users to internalize and use the information they were exposed to in the course.
Have you ever thought about a project-based elearning professional development course? In these courses users are presented with a real business problem and their charge is to solve it in a unique way that exemplifies the company mission statement.
Here are 5 reason to strongly consider Project-Based elearning (PBL) in professional development:
Strong emphasis on growing your employees – Content needs to be the driving factor in your course development. Sure, you can develop fun activities, but they are not worth the time and effort needed to develop them in regards to the content users walk away with. Focus on the following:
- Provides relevant content – What do users need to know to grow in your business?
- Develop skill sets – We always need to increase our use of technology as this market is driving people to our business. Our team members need to develop along with it.
Focused on a Driving Question – If users are going to solve a real problem in your company, the question must be open-ended and engaging enough that it peaks user interest.
Focused on the need to know – Your elearning professional development should start with the Driving Question. Allowing users to seek out the answer is much more engaging than you presenting page after page of information that they spit back in a culminating quiz.
Self-Guided in-depth inquiry – Users will seek out the answer to the Driving Question in innovative, personal ways they will become submerged in the topic. This increases ownership of the learning process.
Requires user voice – Allowing a certain level of ownership of the course product will foster independent thinking and opportunity for users. They will be able to use their dominate skill sets while at the same time developing other skills in order to grow as professionals.
At the end of the day the best elearning professional development courses are those that don’t feel like elearning professional development. PBLs are a great way to accomplish this. If you focus on these 5 outcomes in your elearning, users will be challenged, motivated, and come out the other side feeling appreciated and personally invested in the learning process.
How do you engage users in your elearning professional development courses?