Jennifer Hofmann, President of InSync Training, LLC, who also writes for Training Magazine, answered three of the most common questions about virtual instructor led training (ViLT) and its impact on eLearning. She points out that the dreaded webinar is not the most effective way to handle this method of training.
Hofmann says that one of the biggest challenges for learning facilitators is keeping participants engaged, advising that, “unless you provide meaningful engagement every 3 to 5 minutes, you can be certain participants will get bored and distracted.”
Hofmann will be on hand at this year’s Training’s Online Learning Conference 2016 which happens September 20-22, 2016 in Chicago, where she will be leading multiple hands-on sessions on ViLT – teaching best practices and tips for maintaining learner attention.
Hofmann answers the question ‘How can I keep my learners from multitasking?‘ sharing insight that, “ improper design for live online sessions has inadvertently taught participants that virtual sessions are akin to free time— an opportunity to listen intermittently while checking and responding to e-mail and taking care of other light duties.” Keeping learning meaningful and relevant, brief, and with frequent requests for participation can cut down on multi-tasking during sessions.
She also tackles the question of ‘Should I use live video in my virtual classroom?’ a common concern for workforce training. Her response is that, “Live video is a good way to engage participants, but it should be used sparingly, perhaps at the beginning of a session to introduce the facilitator and then again at the end for Q&A.” In other words, use video for limited sections to avoid learner boredom.
Her last response to the question of ‘How do I make sure virtual learners are engaged?’ brings things together. Hofmann states that with the help of a production partner, “training in the virtual classroom can be far more engaging than comparable classes taught in a traditional format.”