We here at NogginLabs have long stood by the belief that anything can be taught using custom e-learning. Of course, now you are thinking that we are insane because this is a ridiculous thing to say, so allow me to qualify it. Anything can be taught online, and while e-learning may not, in a few cases, fully cover the knowledge, skills, and behaviors to completely master a subject, it can always make significant strides toward mastery.
Probably many of you are still balking at this concept, so here are some examples that showcase what we mean:
- Teaching mIndfulness to healthcare practitioners
- Transforming your company’s sense of community and culture
- Becoming a certified beer expert
- Comprehensively assessing a high-stakes job role
- Learning the nuances of customer service through gaming
- Training water safety instructors
- Working the counter at a fast service restaurant
GO JUMP OUT OF A PLANE
But let’s delve further into the hypothetical. Let’s say you want to teach skydiving. Obviously, there is no experience exactly like jumping out of a plane that we can recreate online. Or is there? What about all of the steps you need to know before, during, and after a jump? What about simulating the experience first so that you can fully embrace and enjoy the real thing?
This is just a quick brainstormed list, created by me, a single Instructional Designer here at NogginLabs, of everything we could do to teach a first-time tandem skydiver:
- Share information about how to dress and what to bring to the jump site through a game that allows you to dress and equip a character; you would be informed of the weather and other pertinent conditions
- Share information through a video that parallels the briefing that a new jumper would hear; even if they hear it all again onsite, it will be better and more digestible if they have already been exposed to the content
- A step-by-step timeline with animated segments (or possibly video) that takes you through the following:
- Boarding the plane
- Reaching your altitude
- Clipping your harness to your instructor
- Exiting the plane
- The sensation of falling
- The science of falling (numbers and time stuff)
- Landing safely
- A primer about how to get certified, if you decide that is the path for you.
See? There is plenty that can be taught and simulated to give the learner a better experience with fewer unknowns that may make a first-time jumper feel out of control. And that’s just off the top of my head. Normally, we’d get the entire Instructional Design team together for a brainstorming session early in the planning stages and come up with even more solutions. Given the time and resources, essentially, the sky is the limit.
What is the most difficult thing that you can imagine you would need to teach online? If you start to break it down into its component steps, there is nearly always a way that custom e-learning, in one of its many incarnations, can streamline, enhance, and improve your current training experience, and possibly even replace it altogether.