The Top 5 Benefits of Online Learning

With the pandemic somewhat under control and at tentative plan for returning to normal in the workplace; we’re taking stock of the learning preferences of our learners and clients that are likely to emerge post-pandemic. The question of online learning in all its forms is something that we have explored in depth over the past two years. We ourselves have moved from 100% classroom-based teaching to 100% online teaching and everything in between.  Looking to the future we believe that organizational learning and development will be greatly impacted by the experiences that educators have had over the past two years.  Although we have our first face to face training group scheduled within the next few weeks many of our clients are still and will continue to be, interested in online learning as a primary choice. For our clients, online learning can take many formats from face-to-face live sessions to a blended or hybrid model incorporating both online and offline delivery. The purpose of this blog is to share our insights so that you can see firsthand the benefits of online learning.  Some of these insights are gained from our lived experiences whilst others are based on candid feedback we’ve received from our learners.

  • Access to training materials online
Your learning resources are at your fingertips

One of the biggest benefits of online learning is that our learners receive high-quality training materials upfront. This is a very beneficial feature of online learning; not only does the learner receive all the resources they need to support their learning journey these resources are shared using an online learning management-portal, in our case Moodle. Using the Moodle portal allows learners to access their training resources anywhere, on any device and at any time of the day or week. This flexible approach is a huge asset to learners who need to schedule their studies around their personal or professional lives.  We have noticed an increased incidence of learners signing up for courses who are non-resident in Ireland logging in from abroad and are often operating in a different time zone.

  • Increased two-way communication and collaboration

In addition to online training materials, our learners can now have 24/7 access to communication with their tutor or course monitor.  In addition to this facility, learners can also communicate with each other through similar channels.  Within Moodle a learner or a group can use internal email, group forums and the announcements function to communicate with their tutor or with each other over the duration of their program. Learners can also submit a draft or project work for review by the tutor on an ongoing basis; all of this is supported by a sophisticated learning management system. The increased potential to collaborate and connect is vital to the learner’s success in an online learning situation. Using the LMS tools to their full potential means that updates can be shared with learners in real-time, schedules can also be shared in real-time and class brainstorming session notes can be shared in real-time by the tutor.

  • Improved understanding of learner engagement

Online learning management systems such as Moodle provide the tutor with real-time updates on the learners’ participation in the course. Activity completion reports make it easy for a tutor to see at a glance when a learner is thriving and also helps to identify areas where a learner might be challenged.  These insights allow for early intervention when it comes to assisting learners towards the successful completion of a module or a project.

  • An Increased Personalised Learning Experience

Online learning allows for the use of a broader range of methodologies to gain learners’ attention. If used properly online learning can increase learner engagement through the use of video, audio, audiovisual and other interactive training resources for instance quizzes.  The learner has more opportunity to engage in the type of learning and learning activities most suited to their needs or personal preferences.

  • Learner Autonomy

Online learning is not for everyone but for those who enjoy the freedom and flexibility of online learning there is a further benefit. Learners who like online learning are generally very pleased with the level of autonomy that comes with being an online learner. Online learners have more control over things that are important to them such as pre-reading, assessment tasks and in many cases the subjects that they are studying or perhaps the sequence in which they approach study & tasks. The automated LMS system allows learners to track and monitor their own progress and sometimes ‘earn’ their way to the next progression. This type of ‘ownership’ is very appealing to our online learners.

It is widely accepted that online learning is not for everybody but for many learners the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks finding that online learning is an excellent choice for the reasons mentioned above.  If you would like to learn more about online learning or if you would like to book an online learning course we’d love to hear from you. You can contact me directly at 086 3897409 or email me at janet@newlinkstraining.com.  Alternatively, you can visit our website at www.newlinkstraining.com

Here’s What Our Online Customers are Saying:

“As a result of this training, I have gained a new confidence which I will be bringing to my training role” (Train the Trainer 2021)

” I didn’t realise that online learning could be so efficient – well done to the team at New Links for all your support and knowledge sharing” (Team Simulation 2021)

“Thank you so much to Janet Jim and the team (Dean who I feel I know) for the supreme effort made to make this such an interesting and thought-provoking programme” (P – online learner December 2021)       

Janet Tumulty

1st February 2022