Interactivity and Engagement in eLearning

There are many reasons why eLearning is often a more effective method of teaching. Any course that is presented physically, in a classroom environment, will lose the attention of the audience. This applies no matter how interesting the subject matter is. People do not have long attention spans; hence an hour-long lecture will be trying for even the best of us.

In an eLearning environment the opportunities for introducing interactivity into the lesson, and hence engaging your students, are many. Here’s a few ideas that you can use to involve your eLearning students, and ensure maximum engagement in your lessons.

Introduce Challenges

You may not be physically face to face with your students – indeed, they may be studying a pre-recorded segment of a course in their own time – but you can still introduce challenges. At the end of a teaching session, set the students a challenge or a problem to solve, relevant to what they have learned in the past study session.

Make it reasonably difficult – it should be a genuine challenge – and let them arrive at their own solution. Then, you can work with them on a one-to-one or group basis to talk through their solution. Challenges engage and inspire and can be used in many areas of teaching.

Gamification as Interactivity

One of the most popular methods of increasing engagement is to introduce a game element into the session. This can be done by creating a scenario in which – for example – the student takes the part of a character in a scene. Or you may want to create a game based on a real-life game but tailored to suit the subject.

There are software packages available that help with gamification, and this is one way of getting students to log on and start achieving. If they know there’s a bit of fun to be had, and games can even involve other students in real time if you wish, then they will be more inclined to put some of their time aside and learn.

Get to the Point

The difficulties of engagement in eLearning are those that manifest in physical teaching – boredom is the main enemy of the tutor and the student. As we said above, attention spans are not long, and any subject will become dull after a while. The advantage of eLearning is that the student does not have to sit through an hour-long lecture.

Instead, if you split the course into shorter segments – even a few minutes at a time – you will automatically enhance engagement. For example, use a ten-minute segment to explain in simple terms a difficult part of the course, or a confusing element of the subject. 10 minutes is short enough for the student, yet it is enough to introduce some of the elements we’ve mentioned above. Set a challenge at the end of that 10-minute section, and you will not lose the viewers’ attention.

eLearning is perhaps the best way of teaching subjects that, when all is said and done, are tedious to study, so introduce the interactive elements and your students will be more inclined to learn.

eLearning about eLearning SAMPLE COURSE

We’ve created a fun and engaging eLearning course, ‘eLearning about eLearning,’ to show you all of the elements that a good eLearning course should have