Irrelevance, monotony, methods unsuited to solving real-world problems… Thoughts on preventing e-learning dropout.
E-learning dropout: concept and design pitfalls to avoid
Have you analysed the dropout rate for your e-learning modules? If they seem high, here are some pitfalls you should avoid, along with some useful concept and design tips to make your modules more effective.
1. Lack of familiarity with your target audience
Before you start to design a module, first take the time to define your target audience! The basic elements of effective e-learning depend on it, including course objectives, vocabulary and language level, choice of channels to be used, and so forth.
Ask yourself the right questions!
- Are you speaking to managers or junior-level employees?
- Do your learners need to understand and retain specific skills, or acquire more basic, quickly accessible knowledge?
- Will your learners access content on a computer or mobile device?
2. Overloading the screen with text
Effective modules strike the right balance between telling, showing and doing! Avoid modules with too much text… They lead to cognitive overload! Only include essential content in your module. Divide your content into logic units that cover a single, easily digestible idea. Secondary information should be placed in an attached reference document.
3. Illustrating for the sake of illustrations
Breaking up text with images and graphics doesn’t mean choosing your photos by chance. No image is worth 1000 words if it’s off-topic! If irrelevant, even the most stunning pictures will only contribute to cognitive overload!
4. Evaluating without challenging
What’s the goal of your training course? To learn about a standard, become familiar with the foundations of a theory? Or to put a theory into practice, be able to solve a problem? The answers to these questions help to define evaluations that will meet your objectives and motivate your learners.
5. Forgetting about the technical aspects
We often talk about the various tools and multimedia platforms, such as synchronised videos and slides, serious games and quizzes, which make e-learning modules interactive and stimulating. To be sure that your animations are not hard to download, first make sure that your learners’ bandwidth and IT equipment are powerful enough. It would be a shame if a lack of technical foresight impacted your users’ experience.
Want to develop captivating and effective e-learning modules? Let Dokeos create and script your e-learning content!