5 Trends for the Future of eLearning and Development
Whether we’re talking about school education or employee training, the field of learning and development has undergone many changes in the past few years, mostly due to technological advancements.
eLearning software, virtual reality, and artificial intelligence have been crucial in transforming the way we learn.
Educational institutions and organizations are investing more in eLearning and development, and over 43% of talent developers state that there’s been a steady rise in L&D budgets.
With the growing investments and increasing interest in eLearning and development, we’re bound to see some significant changes in this field.
Some of these changes are predictable, while others may be surprising. So, let’s take a look at five of the notable trends in eLearning and development, and see how they will reshape the way we learn.
1. Continuous Learning
Over 52% of HR professionals agree that the skills shortage has worsened in the past few years. There’s a great discrepancy between the skills needed for a job, and the skills that job-seekers truly possess.
This poses problems for both parties, job-seekers and employers.
The rising skill gap has created a need for a continuous learning culture. While we’re all familiar with the saying “never stop learning,” this has never been truer.
L&D leaders are prioritizing skill-building to close the skills gaps in the current roles of employees, and are placing more focus on the development of skills that future roles demand.
Employees themselves are requiring that their organizations invest more time and effort into helping them develop more skills.
Over 94% of employees state that they would stay with a company much longer only if it invested in helping them learn.
This continuous learning culture can prove to be advantageous to both employers and employees. Employees would be more satisfied with their careers, while employers would improve their employee retention rates, cutting the costs of recruitment.
Adoption of LMS software is one of the biggest trends in eLearning and development, and it will continue to be so simply because it encourages the continuous learning culture.
2. Personalized Learning Paths
Traditionally, we’ve always had a one-size-fits-all approach to learning. This has proven to be ineffective at best.
Now, there’s a significant shift to personalized learning paths that allow everyone to learn at their own pace.
Personalization is the buzzword in many fields today. It’s an important concept in digital marketing, for tech gadgets, and of course in eLearning.
Since every student/employee has their unique strengths and weaknesses, they will find different learning material to be more challenging, and they will need to find different approaches to mastering the topic.
So, it’s not surprising that over 58% of employees prefer to learn at their own pace. It’s more productive, and the learners can easily skip ahead if they’re familiar with the topic, or go over it as many times as needed if it’s something more challenging.
LMS software and eLearning software as a whole has adopted the trend of personalization and allows different types of learners to approach learning in their unique ways.
3. Social Learning
The next most prominent trend in eLearning and development is social learning. In fact, social learning has always been a trend – after all, it’s the original form of education.
Having said that, the social aspect of learning has been neglected for years. Just think, when you imagine yourself learning or studying, what does the scene look like? More than likely, you imagine sitting in front of a book alone in your room.
Social learning can bring many benefits. It can cut down the time it takes to master a topic, it can increase knowledge retention rates, and it can be excellent for team building.
Over 75% of L&D professionals have adopted social learning technologies in their learning strategy simply because it’s more effective.
Any good LMS software will offer social learning features, which often include:
- Social networking features
- Collaboration tools
- Video conferencing tools
- Instant messaging features
Of late, a lot of attention is being given on social collaboration and knowledge sharing, and this trend is showing no signs of slowing down.
4. On-Demand Learning
Employee training has become more complicated, especially with the rise of the remote workforce. There’s been a 44% growth in remote work in the past five years, and this number keeps rising.
This creates problems when it comes to the traditional approach to employee training. It’s challenging to bring all employees in for classes or even require them to attend online lectures if they’re in a different time zone.
This is why on-demand learning is becoming so popular. Having the ability to access eLearning software and learn whenever and wherever you want is a huge advantage.
67% of U.S. companies offered eLearning opportunities via smartphone in 2017, and the popularity of on-demand learning will drive this number up in the coming years.
5. Gamified Learning
The last big trend in eLearning and development is learning gamification. 80% of U.S. workers believe game-based learning is more engaging and stimulating.
Improving the learners’ engagement levels automatically increases their knowledge retention rates and enhance their learning processes.
This is why many LMS software applications offer gamification elements. You can create fun educational quizzes, add points and scoreboards, encourage friendly competition, and more.
The Bottom Line
Following the latest trends in eLearning and development can help educational institutions and business organizations offer better learning material and enhance learning processes.
To recap, the most significant trends in eLearning and development today are:
- Continuous learning
- Personalized learning
- Social learning
- On-demand learning
- Gamified learning
eLearning software enables companies and institutions to embrace these trends and incorporate them into their teaching programs.