How to avoid overloading learners
When designing and developing eLearning one of the main goals is to try and teach your learners about a specific topic or subject area, this can be a variety of things including compliance training, soft-skills training or technical training. Regardless of the type of eLearning it can be very easy to overload learners and miss the point that the course is trying to teach, to avoid this there are some things you can do in the design stage that will make your course far more enjoyable for learners to take and will improve the overall learning experience.
Below are some things you can do to reduce overloading your learners and allow them to better understand the key learning concepts you are trying to teach.
1. Too much information
Too much information cab be one of the main things that will reduce the effectiveness of your eLearning and overload your learners. When deciding on how you want to split up your learning content it is important to remember that learners learn best in smaller chunks. Microlearning is a concept where learning is broken down into smaller bite sized chunks that the learner can easily digest. How you break your content down will depend on the type and amount of content you have. First it is important to break it out into modules based on the subject area, from here you can further break it down into screens that will display specific learning material.
2. Cluttered Screens
Cluttered screens is one thing that can overload your learners and prevent them from learning the key concepts you are trying to teach them. When deciding on the layout for your screens it is important lay out content in a way that is clean and easy for your learners to read. When writing the learning content it can be tempting to use a lot of text as it is a quick and easy way to explain concepts, however too much text can make the screen look cluttered and can be overwhelming for the learners. Using images, audio or video can be one way to get around this, by using multimedia you can reduce screen space while at the same time presenting your content to the learners.
3. Keeping on topic
When creating your learning content it is important that your eLearning stays on the same track and meets the original learning objectives set. When designing your course it is important to carefully think about what you are trying to achieve, for example if you are trying to teach the learner technical skills that they will use on the job it is important to think carefully about the skills the learner needs to know and teach them in a way that they will remember what they have learnt. When doing this it is important to not get side-tracked on what you are teaching and always think back to the skills the learner needs to know. If you find that you have to teach the learners more than you anticipated think about how you can break it down into smaller chunks and apply micro learning principles.
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