With pressures on training budgets, many organizations are evaluating conversion of existing ILT material to online delivery. This article outlines how you can do this effectively and how you can integrate current and emerging trends into your online training strategy to do so.
Is instructor-led training (ILT) dying? No, ILT isn’t dying. But there sure has been an increase in large-scale conversions of ILT materials to online learning. While a lot of this is triggered by challenges on training budgets, I believe it also provides an opportunity to relook at the traditional format and enhance the training delivery. According to the ‘2016 Benchmark Report: The State of Online Training’, “Technology has not decreased the demand for instructor-led training, but gives instructors new tools to reach learners…The trend in instructor-led learning is enablement through technology, both in hybrid and fully virtual delivery”.
Easier said than done. Right?
The process of converting your ILT collateral to online is certainly more than converting a PowerPoint deck to an online format. You need to plan for several aspects to ensure a successful conversion of your ILT to online training.
In this article, I will provide cues and process steps that will help you make this effort successful.
But before getting down to the process you should follow to convert instructor-led training to eLearning or mLearning, let’s take a quick look at the benefits you will accrue.
You can also take a look at this video to learn about the benefits of converting ILT material to online learning.
At EI Design, our ILT/VILT and blended solutions practice is 15 years old. However, even today I find that more often than not, the conversion of ILT collateral to online is still treated as an exercise of converting an existing PowerPoint deck to an online format. Let me set this bit in the right context.
Since the existing ILT collateral was already instructionally designed, it is assumed that direct conversion of the existing Powerpoint deck into an online format (preferably HTML5 so that it can be accessed on all devices including desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones) is all there is to it as you venture into converting your ILT to eLearning.
While the source material is instructionally designed, you still need to go through the classic steps involved in creating online training or eLearning (ADDIE model of development).
The most commonly used process to create online training is the ADDIE model of development. This is what you need to follow even though you are converting an instructionally designed collateral to online training (eLearning or mLearning).
The ADDIE model stands for:
Based on my practical experience, I recommend that the following aspects should be part of your conversion strategy from Instructor-Led Training (ILT) to eLearning- or mLearning-based online training.
Prior to initiating the conversion exercise, take some time out and quantify the following aspects of the existing ILT program:
1. What is working.
This should be used to determine the “success factors” for the online version.
2. What is not working.
These aspects need to be identified and right strategies to offset these challenges must be part of the online training strategy.
3. What more can be achieved.
As you embark on the conversion path, you can set additional goals that were not feasible in ILT delivery. As I had highlighted earlier, today you can use various strategies that engage the learner better. These could include:
1. Relook at developing the learning outcomes for online training.
This is a pre-requisite and your updated learning outcomes must map precisely to the online training content.
2. Assess if you can convert the ILT program to a fully online training or you need to think of a blended approach.
Just because you have a mandate to go online, don’t miss this step and do a holistic assessment that the conversion process will indeed meet the required outcomes. Otherwise, identify if certain aspects need to be retained in the ILT format and pick a blended solution.
3. Relook at the content and layer the information.
Instead of converting the entire source deck “as-is” to an online format, layer it into “Must Know” or the information aligned to meet the learning outcomes and “Good to Know“. Remember, the online training format allows you to do an effective layering of your source content thereby reducing the seat time but still provide learners with additional supporting information that would enrich their learning.
4. Map existing classroom activities to interactivities.
This is an important exercise and the range of interaction types available today across various eLearning authoring tools will help you do this mapping. You can pick from several, standard approaches like click to reveal, drag and drop, hotspots as well as scenarios with complex decision making options.
5. Assessment strategy.
Base the assessments on your “Must Know” information. You can, however, add Inline Checks to checkpoint some aspects of the “Good to Know” information. The online medium provides several interesting formats for evaluation so use them to make them more engaging and effective.
By following these simple steps, you will be able to ensure an effectve conversion of your ILT collateral to online training (eLearning or mLearning).
You can also take a look at this video that serves as a checklist for aspects to consider before you convert your ILT material to online learning.
I hope this article will be useful in your conversion of existing Instructor-Led Training to eLearning or mLearning. Do use this opportunity to “transform” the learning and create a higher value to both business and learners. Do contact me if you have any queries.
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