Millennials, the generation born in the early 1980s to around 2000 are rapidly making their mark on higher education. This plugged-in generation learns differently, and educational institutions offering various online course through eLearning software need to start taking note of this when designing learning experiences for them. Their enhanced technical skill and the ability to understand and leverage technology calls for the innovative use of methods in learning and development. So how does one design a course for this new age learner?
Let’s look at some key points to keep in mind for designing learning experiences for this generation
1) Allow for Curated And Personalized Learning
Personalised learning and curated learning experiences are key points to keep in mind when designing a learning experience for millennials. Every learner is different and although you will want to have them progress through the same content, you may want to enable them access to eLearning software that personalizes the curriculum so as to allow them to go through the materials in a nonlinear fashion.
In addition to allowing for nonlinear training programs, you will also want to leave some room for your learners to complement the learning materials you have provided them with external resources such as Youtube videos, TED-talks, etc.
2) Allow for Micro Learning
Modern learners have a lot on their minds as they are often juggling multiple tasks, multiple deadlines, multiple screens at the same time and often have a limited attention span. Hence when designing eLearning software for them or creating learning videos, one needs to ensure that the learning modules are micro sized with specific answers that allow for short and appealing content. These short training sprints also allow for more frequent learning through the day, as small content chunks lasting from 5 to 15 minutes can be easily slotted into the daily schedule. Micro-learning gives control to the learner and hence he is more likely to be engaged in the learning experience.
3) Allow for On-The-Go Learning
The modern learner has access to her mobile device all through the day (and night). The learning experience should take advantage of easy access to technology and have them meet the learning content when they need it and where they need it. For instance podcasts, audio books, video tutorials are an increasingly popular means of gaining new information since they offer an easy way to keep learning while being on the move or stuck in rush hour traffic
4) Allow For Gamification of Learning
Gamification of Learning is the introduction of competitive elements in the eLearning software. Through the use of specific and well-designed gamification elements trainers and course creators can introduce goals, interactions, feedback, problem solving scenarios, competitions, narratives and other fun elements that can increase learner engagement and sustain motivation.
5) Allow For Social Learning
Online collaboration is second nature of the modern day learning. One way to introduce social learning within your learning environment is to introduce collaborative learning, in which learners with similar goals learn and grow together by working together on assignments or giving each other feedback on various discussion boards.