elearning-myths-how-video-can-put-them-to-restI recently came across a cool InformED article by Julie DeNeen that looks at the false impressions some folks still have about online and distance learning programs. The post breaks down 30 (yes, 30) eLearning myths that DeNeen writes “need to die in 2013.”

It’s a good read for anyone who’s still unsure about the benefits that eLearning, or at least some sort of blended learning approach, can bring to their organization. It also got me thinking. We write quite a bit on this blog about the use of on-demand video presentations for eLearning and corporate training. So how can video specifically help dispel some of these common myths?

DeNeen does a fine job of putting her 30 myths to rest, but to further her point, I thought I’d write a little about how online video can help ease at least a few of the most common eLearning concerns.

Myth #1 – eLearning is boring. DeNeen saves this one for last, but I wanted to list it first since this is a primary benefit of on-demand video presentations. One of the biggest reasons video has become such a popular format for eLearning content is that it’s a simply a better way to keep learners engaged. The fact is, people tend to retain information at a much higher rate when they can see AND hear it, making video the perfect way to keep folks interested in your content.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that people really like online video these days. This goes way beyond YouTube, as the popularity of enterprise video communications is growing exponentially (Gartner predicts that by 2016, most large companies will stream more than 16 hours of video per worker each month).

Myth #2 – Distance learning is passive. In her post, DeNeen makes the (totally true) argument that live eLearning courses can be just as interactive as in-person sessions. I’d take it one step further to note that on-demand training can include several levels of interactivity as well.

For example, Brainshark video presentations can be equipped with quizzes and survey questions that viewers can respond to right within the player. Polls can even be updated in real time to give learners a greater sense of community, even If they are viewing content from an empty room. As noted above, video already raises the engagement factor for eLearning up a notch; adding interactive elements that force learners to take action themselves enhances the experience even further.

Myth #3 – There is no way to measure true learning. This might be the most ridiculous myth of them all. As DeNeen points out, “This argument is not exclusive to eLearning. Learning is a difficult thing to measure regardless, simply because there are so many different types of learning. But the truth is that eLearning courses have the same tools for measuring success as a traditional classroom.”

These tools are the common ones you’d expect – primarily quizzes and exams. Naturally, any eLearning software worth its salt has features like these built in, and this is the same for video-based training content. With video, you can not only track and report on test results, but also who has/hasn’t viewed your training material or which learners have only taken the time to watch parts of it. You can even monitor which questions/topic areas are giving people the most trouble, allowing you to reevaluate your content and improve your programs.

These are just a few ways online video can bolster your on-demand training program. For more details, check out the resources below and visit the InformED site to find a host of advice for better learning and training.

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