Hopefully, the days of boring corporate training are over.
We now have access to gamification and simulations, plus now augmented reality or ‘AR' and virtual reality, or ‘VR'. With the explosion of available technology, corporate training has taken a whole new look and feel, far beyond blending face-to-face and online learning courses.
Adobe has predicted these learning and development trends in 2019:
- Adaptive learning, supported by assessments and measurement of training effectiveness, is taking learning to the next level. Learners will benefit from a more personalised learning process; using effective assessments, learners can skip the content that they are completely confident about.
- Microlearning was a strong trend in 2018. It is a great method of implementing learning in small chunks that are objectives-driven and can be easily and quickly deployed within organizations. Learners get through the modules quickly and can repeat the learning as many times as necessary. Willingness to complete the modules improves along with retention.
- Artificial Intelligence will be used to guide learner behaviour and provide support as needed.
- Game-based learning to empower and engage their learners better. Gamification demonstrates improved retention rates and better application of the subject matter learned at work.
- Videos are one of the hottest modes of training. Instructor-Led Training interspersed with anecdotal or contextual videos, or eLearning where videos play an integral part in disseminating information will continue to see an increased usage due to popularity with the learning audience.
- Social learning involves collaboration between individuals at the workplace through various modes, such as forums, informal chat sessions, sharing sessions, and learning circles. Advances in collaborative platforms will expand the social learning experience in the digital channels.
- LMSs will continue to grow and offer adaptive learning and content curation as an important method of sharing information, and provide the right experience to the learners.
- Virtual Reality or Augmented Reality: Augmented reality uses an existing environment, and virtual reality uses a virtual environment as a base. The great thing about Augmented Reality is that it can enhance the user experience with existing content to further engage learners. Added to AR and VR is the exciting new modality called Mixed Reality or MR. MR is described as a hybrid of AR and VR. It involves interaction between both the elements: objects from the real world as well as the objects from the virtual world. Quora]
Benefits of VR
There are many benefits of using VR/AR/MR in learning. Here are just a few to consider:
- Ability to provide real-time feedback;
- Creation of realistic scenarios;
- Creation of any scenario or environment;
- The freedom to fail safely;
- Increased retention of knowledge due to heightened engagement;
- The pace of learning can be learner-centric;
- Performance enhancement;
- Cost efficiency;
- Collaboration across geographies and individuals;
- Cumulative analytics for both learners and teachers; and
- Caters to a variety of learning styles.
VR is a powerful learning tool, with the ability to transform existing learning content into scenarios.
VR is now more affordable and accessible. The headsets are more comfortable, and the hardware works much better. A competitive market has driven down prices, increased accessibility and increased the innovation in VR. It is now possible to measure and benchmark virtual learning performance during a VR program.
As we know, learning in an environment like the one where it will be applied, greatly increases retention rates and engagement. It provides the learner with an opportunity to test skills and knowledge without risk. Emerging areas of focus for VR in eLearning or blended learning solutions go beyond compliance and health and safety training including:
- High-end leadership development;
- Virtual dialogues such as communication and selling skills and negotiation training;
- Functional skills development.
A collection of micro-learning experiences using VR, i.e. short-term-focused experiences, specially designed for skill-based understanding, learning and education [Wikipedia], can be coupled together into stimulating programs that learners can tap in and out. The immediate feedback loops and the freedom to fail in these simulated scenarios, cannot be underestimated. The attraction of learning environments that are visual, kinaesthetic and auditory is very compelling for both talent development programmes and functional skills training such as selling skills.
The percentage of Millennials [Generation Y or Generation ‘Me'] in the workforce is predicted to increase to around 35% by 2020. Along with Gen Zs [Post Millennials], predicted to rise to around 24% by 2020, they will make up half the workforce. Having grown up using the internet as second nature, Gen Zs are true digital natives and have never known a world without it.
Using VR can create much more immersive learning experiences that these generations expect. The learner can be in control to explore different storylines, test out different techniques, and see immediately the potential outcomes of their decisions.
Ask Actando about our latest advances in learning, including Virtual Dialogues.
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The Actando Consulting Team