What is eLearning? eLearning Is NOT Just About Technology
As technology advances and the world becomes increasingly more digital, education has become more widely accessible. The average person is much more equipped than any generation prior to us has ever been. Thanks to the invention of the internet, we now have a plethora of resources at the tip of our fingers.
So, what is eLearning?
A quick online search will come up with a lot of different definitions, but all of them will most likely contain two key ideas: education and the internet. You can infer this by simply looking at the term itself: ‘Learning’ refers to the education aspect, and the ‘e’ prefix indicates the state of existing online, as it does with other internet age-coined terms like “e-mail.”
While definitions can be a good starting point for researching a topic, they should be treated as just that. If you focus solely on this broad definition, however, you’re going to miss other key elements that make up eLearning and how it affects you as an individual or business.
Many people and companies mistakenly believe that eLearning is a technology that gives your learners access to the content you’ve created for them. However, this definition of eLearning stirs many individuals and companies in the wrong direction.
What makes a good eLearning course? Not the technology, but the relevance of the offered information to your learners' needs.
With that being said, if you’ve set out to create an excellent eLearning program, you need to define eLearning not as technology but as a complex thing it really is.
What makes a good eLearning course?
A good eLearning course is comprised of different parts that work well together. It’s created with the real learner in mind and stands on three pillars of eLearning: Content; Technology, and Distribution.
To create a successful eLearning program, you need to have strategies in place to identify your learners needs, create eLearning videos and other types of content that your audience will engage with, select technology to host your eLearning program, and distribute your eLearning successfully. As you can see, eLearning is NOT just about technology. Let’s dive into the three pillars of eLearning.
Pillar #1. Content: The Building Blocks
Content refers to the eLearning videos you create, but also all other pieces that enhance the process of learning. It’s the actual substance that provides value to the consumer, whether it be in the means of video, audio, text, or some other form of communication. In other words, it’s the meat and potatoes of eLearning. The success of the course is dependent on the content that’s delivered and received by the consumer, bringing us to our next two pillars:
Pillar #2. Technology: It’s All Around Us
Technology is the platform that enables the very existence of eLearning content, and chances are you’re well familiar with the most ubiquitous player of today: Google. That’s right. Google is an eLearning technology, as is the subsidiary video platform, YouTube. These technologies are platforms that host the content, allowing it to be distributed to the consumer, which we’ll elaborate on later in this article.
However, eLearning technology can also be a tool that allows one to content. For example, video-making applications like Adobe Premiere and iMovie can be used to create eLearning videos. Even Microsoft Word could fall under this category, a long used simple tool to build text-based content. The possibilities are endless.
Pillar #3. Distribution: Spreading the Word
If a tree falls, but no one is around to hear it, does it still make a sound?
Distribution refers to the aspect delivering the product to the consumer. Maybe it’s your businesses Marketing and Sales department. Maybe it’s a simple email blast from HR. Whatever form it takes, distribution is what ensures the eLearning content is actually seen, heard, or otherwise received.
While this aspect is often overlooked in commonly perceived notions of what eLearning means, it’s equally as crucial as our former pillars. Without distribution, all of the content would be lost in the abyss of information out there, and the technology would render useless.
So, what does all of this mean for you?
If you’re an individual looking to make some passive income on the side, utilizing eLearning could be a lucrative option for you. Do you have a skill in demand or knowledge that’s highly sought after? Monetize it.
Or, maybe you have a direct-to-consumer business, and you’re looking to grow. You can scale your business by training your employees or contractors, which is made possible via eLearning.
You don’t need a ton of money to get started. Understand the fundamentals of eLearning, as well as your consumers’ pain points or what they’re looking to gain, and you’re well on track for profiting from what you already know.
Are you ready to take the plunge?
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