As an instructional designer, I often interact with learners to evaluate the effectiveness of the courses that we develop. At G Cube, we use Kirkpatrick’s Model to assess the value of training. We determine the reaction of learners to the training, determine the level of learning that has taken place, and probe how they intend to use their new expertise, knowledge, or attitude within their workplace. Sometimes the reaction to training is good, and learners report that the course content was valuable. Other times, learner feedback is negative.
To evaluate the impact of a G Cube compliance e-learning course developed for one of the world’s largest research companies, I connected with the learners. One learner, Olivia, had this to say:
“An email with an ‘important’ alert popped up in my mailbox. So, I clicked on it to find the following message.”
Final reminder: Take the Ethics and Compliance Course before 12:00 p.m. today. Your failure to do so will be escalated to your supervisor !
“Oh no, not another boring compliance course!” I thought to myself. My experience of attending similar training was like having castor oil forced down my throat, much like Tom and Jerry when Tom’s owner makes him drink castor oil every time he does something wrong.
“I was expecting the usual tsunami of content, textbook scenarios, and multiple-choice questions. But with this email’s red alert, I had no choice but to click ‘Start.’ Half an hour later, I was surprised, and pleasantly so!” Olivia told me, looking visibly enthused. “I felt like I was watching a movie in which I was a character. I ‘lived’ the entire learning experience!” she continued.
Intrigued, I prodded Olivia further. “So, tell me more about your learning experience.”
“I didn’t feel like it was a course. It was a roller coaster of the most fun elements! The course included games, videos with real actors, and engaging stories. It had mood surveys to gauge how I felt about a story or scenario played out before me. In real life, your inner radar sets off warning bells about a situation, and this course helped me refine mine. And the quotes were food for thought! They reminded me of the Instagram posts I keep liking. The questions they asked, which we were free to write answers to, felt like I was responding to a post on Facebook. I wish every course were like this one. It has changed my perception of compliance courses and web-based learning.”
As a part of the instructional designing team, I felt immense pride and achievement. Olivia’s enthusiastic reaction to the course made the demanding work, deep knowledge, and planning we had done to create it worthwhile.
So, what did we do to make this course riveting?
1. We piqued the learners’ interest in the first few minutes. While there are many ways to engage learners, one of the most effective ways in an e-learning course is tapping into their emotions using a mix of modalities, including images and videos. Videos are the preferred form of content consumption today. The benefits of video-based learning are numerous. The course used videos with real actors and engaging storylines. Millennials also love platforms, such as Instagram, which use images with minimal text to make concepts stick. Therefore, we used images to present ethics and compliance quotes throughout the course.
2. We created a memorable learning experience. There is no formula for this one. However, we recognized it as a crucial element of the course, surpassing even the best content. If there is one thing most people enjoy more than watching videos, it’s playing games on devices. This is what extensive research done by PWC states. So, we made liberal use of game elements to interactivity engage the learners with the course content. We included mood meters, compliance trackers, unique custom HTML interactions, and excellent instructional flow to allow learners to experience the content as if they were playing a game.
3. We didn’t just provide content; we made learners interact with it. By making the course interactive, we ensured that the course was captivating and that there was also high knowledge retention. Enabling learners to apply their acquired knowledge encourages them to reflect on their learning experiences, ensuring high knowledge retention. Providing “just-in-time” information needed for support during such interactions used the 5 Moments of Need® approach.
Developing this course has strengthened my confidence in the magic of learning design to enhance the consumption and retention of the most complex concepts.
Have you created a compliance course to deal with the “new normal?” If not, contact G cube to develop an engaging e-learning training course tailored to your specific needs.