Learner engagement can be tricky to grasp and even trickier to implement. The many benefits that come with having engaged learners, however, make the extra effort worthwhile.
Taking the time to better understand how learner engagement works and how to foster and increase it among learners is the first step to making the most of those benefits.
Understanding the true essence of learner engagement
Learner engagement is the product of instructional strategies that promote active learning and provide learners with constant motivation. As a result, engaged learners are:
● active in their learning,
● eager to participate,
● willing to expend effort in their learning,
● motivated, and
The idea that learning engagement occurs on multiple levels may sound surprising, but true learner engagement, especially in adult learners, is achieved simultaneously in a cognitive, emotional, behavioral and social level.
By engaging learners on all levels, organizations can reap the many benefits of learner engagement in full. Furthermore, they can prevent learner disengagement and neutralize its consequences.
Preventing disengagement and making the most of engaged learners
Learners can be fully engaged, partially engaged or disengaged entirely. In that case, they mostly look psychologically detached, passive in their learning, and unwilling to expend effort on training activities.
But, in practice, this is not an option for any organization, as there’s a direct, inevitable connection between learner engagement and job performance. Preventing disengagement and successfully promoting learner engagement leads to lower dropout rates, increased knowledge retention, and many social benefits across the workplace, like establishing a culture of learning and collaboration.
Benefits that come with increased cognitive engagement include learners improving their problem-solving skills and sharpening their on-the-job creativity. Also, learners that are engaged become invested in their personal development, which makes their productivity soar. For an organization, that means that increasing learner engagement leads to a higher training ROI.
Nonetheless, putting effort and resources into increasing learner engagement comes with a few challenges.
Eliminating the barriers to learner engagement
The factors that prevent learners from engaging in learning can be grouped into three categories: barriers to learning, workplace challenges, and barriers to engaging online learners.
Many barriers to learning, like lack of focus, negative past experiences, and personal mindsets depend on the learners’ individual traits. Workplace challenges, like lack of community, lack of purpose, and distracting surroundings are the responsibility of the organization. As for engaging learners in online learning environments, an organization may have to confront a lack (or perceived lack) of technical savvy, possible feelings of isolation, and the fear of boredom.
Fortunately, all these barriers can be eliminated by using simple learning engagement strategies.
Motivating learners: 8 proven strategies for increasing engagement
Tried and tested many times over, the following strategies can either be applied to learners in general or (as is the case with the last three) corporate learners specifically:
1. Setting clear learning goals
2. Making learning convenient
3. Getting creative with course content
4. Rewarding learners for engaging
5. Creating open communication channels
6. Offering real-life rewards for engagement
7. Using on-the-job training and simulations
8. Prioritizing LMS accessibility and convenience
To put these strategies into action, an organization should pick an advanced LMS solution, one that comes packed with the right features for the job.
Using an LMS to engage learners
To enable learning engagement among learners, an LMS should offer a particular set of advanced features, just like the ones supported by TalentLMS.
Blended learning, for instance, offers flexibility and helps cultivate a sense of social connection. Gamification, on the other hand, with its competition features (i.e., badges, points, leaderboards, etc.), has been proven to create a healthy competitive culture within and between organizations.
User profiles allow learners to personalize their LMS presence, Discussions help them connect with each other and form lively communities, and Certificates provide recognition on social media and professional networks.
On top of that, mobile learning capabilities allow learners to complete their training at their convenience, while interactive SCORM/xAPI content enables instructional designers to deliver more compelling learning experiences. Fully customizable LMS platforms allow for tailored training environments that draw learners in, and survey/rating capabilities enable the learner’s voices to be heard and possibly co-author the future of their training.
Pick a top-notch LMS and boost learner engagement
An LMS can have a major impact on increasing learner engagement, overcoming barriers to learning, and motivating adults to learn. So, why risk using a learning management system that is less than the best?
TalentLMS offers a wide variety of advanced, easy-to-use features for boosting learner engagement and reaping all of its benefits. Don’t waste any more time! Create your forever free TalentLMS account and find out for yourself.