Every online training course is unique, with a specific goal and audience that determines your approach. We’ve put together 8 innovative web-based training examples to give you inspiration for your next project.
Whether you’re producing online training courses for your own employees, or if you’re in the business of selling online training, creating engaging content is essential. It’s a competitive world out there, with innovative training providers raising the bar and changing the way training is delivered and consumed, for example:
- Lynda.com allows anyone to create and share playlists, so learners can create their own pathways.
- Google Primer uses real case study material, insider tips and interactive tips and quizzes for you to see how you’re doing
- Treehouse offers high-quality studio-produced video lessons hosted by an in-house team of trainers
- Duolingo delivers content in short learning chunks, with placement tests to put you start you at the right level
- Codecademy has broken down content and practice into a series of very short exercises so it’s easy to roll through or get back into after a break
Does your online training live up to the high expectations of the modern learner? Take a look at these 8 examples of online courses to get inspiration for your digital learning strategy…
8 fresh examples of online training courses
If you need to provide online training around a moral or emotive subject matter, using stories could be just the thing.
People connect with and remember stories, which is why they’re a tried and tested learning approach. They can be used to tackle seemingly dry subjects, like compliance or soft skills, making them far more real and engaging for your audience.
Remember that stories can be told through many different mediums. High-impact video drama can certainly pack a punch, but, as this online example shows, compelling words, visuals and a sprinkling of sound effects can be equally as engaging. Get our top 5 storytelling tips here.
2. Branching scenario
When it comes to online learning experiences, branching can be a great way to put learners in the driving seat, and increase engagement.
‘Choose your own adventure’ style scenarios, immerse users in a story and allow them to actively participate in decisions that control the outcome. Users learn through experiencing consequences rather than being informed of them, helping them learn through trial and error in a safe environment.
This online example from the Open University shows powerful video scenarios interspersed with decision points, with the ability to see the impact of your choices. Audio or text-based scenarios would work just as well, and are far more budget friendly!
3. Reflective learning
Learning through reflection helps your audience mentally prepare for ‘real world’ interactions, and helps challenge their existing perceptions.
Often, the learning experiences that resonate the most are the ones that make us stop and think, and allow us to reach our own conclusions. This approach can shed light on content with grey areas and diverse opinions, such as leadership skills or change management.
This example (created in collaboration with the Open University), uses reflective, personal questions to engage the audience with detailed historical and political content.
Not all digital learning experiences need to be interactive. A well-designed, informative infographic can communicate core messages very effectively.
Learners often struggle to find the time to work through a lengthy course, and are tired of ‘traditional’ click-through elearning. Content that can be visualized is a great way to either grab learners’ attention or summarise key points, as shown in the example below. Think new processes, initiatives or core concepts that can be used ‘in the moment’
5. Digestible ebooks
If you’re looking to turn that text-heavy PDF policy document, employee handbook or other resource material into something that’s easy to digest and engaging, then an online ebook could be your golden ticket.
Having your training solutions in an easily accessible format will help cut through the noise and help people when, where and how they need it.
When we wanted to increase engagement with our text-heavy analytic guide, we created a responsive ebook style design, shown in the example below. Each chapter has its own internal “page contents” menu, so the user can easily see what that chapter covers and jump directly to a particular part of the chapter page if needed.
6. Responsive visual design
Designing a responsive elearning course is vital to providing an optimal experience for the learner, as well as maintaining engagement across devices.
Sometimes that means removing or redesigning something for smaller screens without losing any of the key content, as in this Open University example.
The desktop version includes large pictures that illustrate the story being told, as well as housing hotspots that deliver the learning content.
On a slightly smaller screen, the image is simply cut down slightly so that the hotspot text content still has room to be legible using Variations. When viewed on a mobile, the interaction type changes because the smaller space doesn’t lend itself well to the image explorer activity.
These responsive elearning design examples show that delivering to multiple devices no longer means working to the lowest common denominator!
7. Video-driven story
Video dramas are an undeniably powerful way of engaging and immersing learners.
The high-impact nature grabs attention, but a powerful storyline and relatable characters is what’s needed to bring content to life. This can be effective when addressing core mandatory training, such as health and safety or anti-bribery.
This training example shows how well-placed digital interactions can increase the impact of the learning points made in the video and encourage learners to apply their knowledge.
8. Audio-based gamification
Audio-based gamification is a great way to put what’s been learned to the test.
Using audio to simulate a realistic work conversation is a great way to immerse learners in a life-like situation and build their skills and confidence as they have to respond to what they hear.
This demo shows how gaming mechanics such as points and timers can be added to a scenario to create a realistic simulated environment for salespeople to practice their skills.
These 8 awesome online training examples are just some of the ways you can make your content more engaging, more impactful, more relevant and relatable. But, keep your audience and goals in mind when adopting these approaches, as the most successful solutions are always the ones that are fit for purpose.
Inspired by these examples? Chat with us to get set up with a free trial of Elucidat today; we can gift some of the examples above directly into your account for you to pick apart and play around with.
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