Today’s learners are an impatient lot, and they want training that is personalized for them. In this article, I show you the value of a personalized learning plan, and how you can leverage on video-based learning to enhance this further.
Today, L&D teams incorporate online training as a significant part of their overall learning strategy. The usage of eLearning and mobile learning enables them to reach a wider audience quickly and with a consistent message.
However, this approach also has an intrinsic challenge. The same course gets rolled out to learners who have varied proficiency levels, different learning styles and so on. Often, the generic approach does not resonate with learners across heterogeneous profiles and may not create the required impact.
This challenge can be offset by using the personalized learning based approach. This enables L&D teams to offer a customized and relevant learning experience for their learners. Given the preference for video-based learning, you can leverage on them to offer custom and personalized learning experiences.
What Is A Personalized Learning Plan?
You would be surprised to note that the concept of personalized learning has been there since the 1960s; it is only over the last few years that it has been looked like an important strategy for online training.
While the concept of personalized learning continues to evolve, take a look at the United States National Education Technology Plan 2017 that defines personalized learning very effectively.
“Personalized learning refers to instruction in which the pace of learning and the instructional approach are optimized for the needs of each learner. Learning objectives, instructional approaches, and instructional content (and its sequencing) may all vary based on learner needs. In addition, learning activities are meaningful and relevant to learners, driven by their interests, and often self-initiated.”
What Are The Triggers That Are Leading To The Adoption Of A Personalized Learning Plan?
There are several reasons that trigger the adoption of a personalized learning plan. Here are the top 5:
- Given the pressures on time (that is limited) and the need to multi-task and juggle tasks through the day, learners want to spend time on a customized training that will truly help them (acquire a new skill, solve a problem, or enhance their performance). Unless this condition is met, the learners do not see the justification in spending time on training.
- A multi-generational workforce is a common feature in most organizations. Often, there are learners with 4-5 distinct profiles. The way they learn and apply the learning on the job is different. This leads to the need for flexible and personalized learning experiences that would resonate with each profile.
- Given the fact that learners would have different proficiency levels, we cannot expect each of them to go through an identical learning path. Instead, flexibility to opt for a personalized learning pathway that matches their proficiency is required.
- The delivery of training is slowly moving away from a “push” based approach to “pull” based approach. In the former approach, L&D teams would set up the recommended learning courses on the LMS. Instead, today’s learners want the flexibility to pull learning nuggets that interest them and not be limited by a prescriptive learning path all the time.
- Instead of going through a long generic program, learners want the option to pick the relevant sections of the training that match their role and hence will add value to what they do and how they contribute to the organizational goals.
What Are The Benefits Of A Personalized Learning Plan?
Here is my list of the top 10 benefits that you will see as you adopt a personalized learning plan:
- It empowers learners as they can now pick what would work best for them.
- It enables learners to control the learning journey, and they can set their learning path.
- It enables learners to establish their own, personalized learning goals.
- It provides learners the flexibility to choose the way they want to consume content and at the pace that works best for them.
- It gives learners a range of options wherein they decide what works optimally for them.
- Additionally, learners get a more focused and meaningful learning experience as the content is relevant and matches their interest and aspirations.
- Not only is the learning customized, but even the feedback is also personalized and this helps learners improve their performance.
- Learners can use the recommendations to recalibrate the way forward.
- As an extension, personalized learning features better completion rates.
- As a logical extension, the personalized learning plan also shows a better ROI on the training spent.
What Techniques Can Be Used To Offer Personalized Learning?
The key highlights of personalized learning are:
- Its ability to offer a custom learning experience for each learner.
- It can be designed to match the different levels of learner proficiency.
- It can offer varied formats to match the varied expectations of a multi-generational workforce.
- It provides control to the learners to design the learning path that matches their region, role, interest, and aspirations.
At EI Design, we have several techniques to deliver personalized learning. I have banded them into 3 levels – from the degree of customization that can be achieved.
Basic Level Of Personalized Learning
- Flexibility to choose a font, theme, or background for the course.
- Create a profile and select an avatar (or upload the learner’s image).
Intermediate Level Of Personalized Learning
You can provide the option to the learners to opt for with/without learning path.
- Options for different formats
You can offer different formats to suit the varied learner profiles.
Advance Level Of Personalized Learning
This level offers a customized learning path that can be selected based on:
- The learner’s role
- The learner’s region
This can also have the option for versions that are available in a local language.
- The learner’s proficiency
A pre-test can determine the existing proficiency of the learner and give him/her a personalized learning path. Today, a microlearning-based training approach provides adequate granularity that enables you to offer a highly Personalized learning experience.
- The learner’s interest
Instead of a pre-test, you can also offer an option to the learner to create a custom, Personalized learning path based on the areas of interest. This can be achieved through a Survey Form.
- The learner’s performance
This can be used to provide personalized feedback to further enhance the learning experience.
Are There Any Specific Ways For Leveraging Video-Based Learning And Increasing The Impact Of Personalized Learning?
At EI Design, video-based learning is a significant part of our microlearning practice and they can be used to add further value to your personalized learning.
- Video-based learning strategy 1
You can offer videos to capture the attention of different learner profiles and establish What Is In It For Me (WIIFM) so that they are meaningfully connected to the program.
- Video-based learning strategy 2
You can create different variants and formats of microlearning videos to match learners with different proficiencies.
- Video-based learning strategy 3
You can use interactive videos that provide different learning paths to the learners based on the choices they make. You can also provide highly personalized feedback based on the outcome of the choices they make.
I hope this article provides you good insights on why you should opt for personalized learning, and how it can be used to match the role, region, proficiency, or interest areas of a given learner profile. I hope my video-based learning strategies will help you enhance its impact further.
If you have any specific queries, do contact me or leave a comment below.
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