Collaborative eLearning: 7 Top Advantages To Consider
Collaborative eLearning involves social interactions with online peers, instructors, and experts. Online learners have the opportunity to see things from a different perspective while problem-solving in group settings. As a result, everyone gets what they need from the collaborative eLearning experience. They also have the ability to share their skills and knowledge for the improvement of others, which creates a stronger learning culture. Here are the top 7 advantages of incorporating collaborative eLearning activities into your eLearning course.
1. Builds Teamwork Skills
Collaborative eLearning involves group work. From online discussions to problem-solving projects, online learners must work tougher to achieve a common goal. As a result, they build vital teamwork skills, such as communication, conflict resolution, and leadership abilities. Collaborative eLearning activities also allow them to fine tune their Project Management approach. For example, delegating responsibilities and managing their time effectively. Thus, they become better managers and supervisors in the process. To facilitate teamwork skill building, you might consider online group collaboration projects that involve eLearning content creation. For instance, invite online learners to divide into groups and develop their own online materials. They must overcome challenges, assign roles, and stick to a schedule in order to create the finished product.
2. Provides A Mutually Beneficial eLearning Experience
Every online learner has the chance to benefit from the experience, skills, and knowledge of their peers. They can ask questions, offer their opinions, and express their concerns in a supportive setting. This is one of the main reasons why it’s important to create a list of guidelines for your eLearning groups. Outline how online learners should communicate, what tools are available to them, and how they are expected to handle conflicts. For instance, they must contact the team leader regarding issues that may affect the entire group. Ground rules ensure that everyone feels comfortable sharing their ideas without the fear of being judged or ridiculed.
3. Online Learners Gain A New Perspective On The Subject Matter
Collaborative eLearning exposes online learners to new perspectives. They have the ability to interact with peers that they wouldn’t have known otherwise. Technology allows them to move beyond geographical limitations and engage in lively online discussions. As such, every member of your audience sees the subject matter from different viewpoints. For example, one online learner may approach a problem from a unique angle, thanks to their life experience and cultural background. These collaborative eLearning activities encourage online learners to respect the opinions of others and honor diversity.
4. Improves Online Learner Participation And Engagement
Human beings like social interaction. It’s true, we prefer to go off on our own from time to time, but we rely on societal groups to communicate and share life experiences. For this reason, collaborative eLearning improves engagement and participation, as it appeals to our social needs. This is especially the case in smaller group settings. For example, closed social media groups with fewer members. Online learners are able to explore new ideas and concepts with peers from around the world, without venturing into a public forum.
5. Facilitates Peer-Based Feedback
One of the most significant advantages of collaborative eLearning is continual peer-based feedback. Online learners can upload their assignments, write blog posts, and add ideas to the group message board. In return, they receive valuable input from their online peers. This allows them to identify areas for improvement and bridge performance gaps. However, this is yet another area that requires instructor or facilitator monitoring. For example, detailed guidelines for how online learners should provide feedback and how often. eLearning professionals can use this form of feedback to improve the eLearning course design, as well. Many online learners will share their honest opinions and insights with their peers before expressing concerns to their online instructors. As a result, you can pinpoint problem areas in order to provide more effective eLearning experiences.
6. Helps Online Learners Overcome Limiting Beliefs
More often than not, people aren’t even aware that they have personal beliefs that are hindering the learning process. This includes a broad range of cognitions, such as opinions, past experiences, and cultural influences. There may also be assumptions that prevent them from interacting with their peers. For example, they are misinformed about the cultural beliefs or traditions. Collaborative eLearning allows them to test these assumptions and evaluate their cognitions. Every interaction is an opportunity to learn more about the backgrounds of their peers and appreciate their differences. Host a virtual brainstorming session to break the ice and get online learners thinking about their thought process. Exchanging information, asking questions, and laterally thinking can spark friendly debates and help them challenge preconceived notions.
7. Fosters A Sense Of Online Learning Community
Online learners may have to contend with feelings of isolation. This is primarily due to the fact that they aren’t in the same physical space as their peers or online instructors. However, collaborative eLearning helps you build an online learning community where online learners get the support they need. That being said, online learning communities don’t just suddenly appear. You must lay the groundwork by creating forums, social media groups, and eLearning blogs to facilitate the process. Encourage online learners to share their thoughts and ideas by posting a prompt. Or host a webinar where everyone can introduce themselves and meet like-minded individuals. You should also compile a list of online resources that online learners can use to collaborate. For example, recommend Project Management online platforms and provide links to your social media pages.
Collaborative eLearning gets your online learners engaged and interacting with their peers. They can explore different viewpoints, challenge their assumptions, and become part of an active online learning community. As such, you may want to think about incorporating collaborative eLearning activities into your next eLearning course.
Are you looking for some extra collaborative eLearning ideas? Read the article 5 Online Group Collaboration Ideas For Your Next eLearning Course to discover the top group collaborative eLearning activities that you can incorporate into your eLearning course design.
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