Digital learning programs are one of the hottest trends in education today and eLearning is the wave of the future. ELearning through the internet offers schedule flexibility for many students, while a growing number of online courses provide the mix of interaction with professors and students and graded feedback that traditional educational programs provide. ELearning brings courses to students who cannot find such material in their own area, and often at lower price tag than conventional educational programs. Here are four trends to watch in the world of eLearning in 2017.
Mobile Learning as the Workplace Standard
Companies are increasingly using online learning modules and content management systems to offer the latest OSHA, sexual harassment and other legally mandated training to all employees. This mobile learning lets them take the courses on their schedule, such as when work is slow on the production line, while the courseware tracks who has and has not taken the training. Many mobile learning platforms offer assessments and identify those who failed assessments for retraining.
Micro-Degrees and Online Certificates
Companies place value on continuous learning, and they realize that a master’s degree or doctorate is not necessarily the right way to go. Piling on certifications isn’t practical for many people, whether due to the cost or time commitments. ELearning programs are increasingly tailored to offer online certificates for specific skills and micro-degrees.
Microdegrees don’t negate the value of an online degree and you can finish your degree online through the University of South Dakota or another program, regardless of where you live. Depending on the school, you may even be able to use online courses in accounting, computer science and Human Resources law toward credit for a bachelor’s or master’s degree offered through the same school.
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
Virtual reality relies on goggles to replicate reality. Virtual reality simulations are being used to train transit workers, so that they know how to do their job before they ever set foot in the train or bus. Virtual machines let budding system administrators enter commands and try to solve the simulated problem.
YouTube and Online Video Platforms
YouTube has become a major source of online learning, whether it is how to prepare a certain dish, recreate a popular hairstyle or troubleshoot a specific error message. Its greatest benefit for the public is that most content, especially educational content, is free. Companies and non-profits are offering more educational content to the public through these media channels because it lets them build brand awareness, a tighter relationship with their customers, and market their products and services in a non-obtrusive manner. For example, an appliance repair service can answer the question on how to clear a particular error message from the dishwasher and suggest that you call them if the error returns.
Micro-degrees and other certificates offer for online learning are growing in popularity since they are faster and cheaper than full degree programs while demonstrating someone’s continuing education. Companies are using eLearning as part of legally obligated ongoing training. Virtual reality is already being used as a training method, while augmented reality is still maturing as a technology. Free online video platforms like YouTube offer a low cost way to market your product or services while educating the public.