As an organization intensively involved in eLearning we permanently check the quality of our courses and try to amend the quality. One issue is the communication – here mainly the contact between the learners and the tutor.
In fact, we were sure that the best method is a forum where learners can ask the trainer. The result of a questionnaire (conducted in the frame of a Grundtvig Multilateral Project) the results prove our current opinion – but not fully.
Do women prefer to talk?
In an eLearning course, there is always the problem of the support of the learners. Sometimes, learners want to contact their tutor or the have a problem and need help from their trainer or teacher. Which method – do you think – is the best one?
There are several methods available and you have to select the best one. Here is the list of possibilities:
Here are two synchronous and two asynchronous methods mentioned.
The behavior is similar: the majority prefers forums. Here the preference of male participants is about 10 percent higher as the female answers.
Female participants in the opposite show a higher percentage of skype preferences – they prefere to talk.
If you check the differences between synchronous and asynchronous communication you will find a six percent higher level of preferences for synchronous methods at the female users.
Here is an overview about eLearning advantages (we always compare eLearning with pure face-to-face classroom teaching). The list is split into three parts respecting the different target groups involved in eLearning. The summary is based on modern eLearning courses using an optimized platform (that does not really exist) and well done courses using a lot or multimedia elements and interactivity.
Advantages of eLearning (learner’s view)
Learner actively involved in his/her e-learning
Interactivity and attractiveness of eLearning content
Flexibility and adaptability according to availability (time, location)
Training at own pace, independently of other learners
Self-assessment during and at end of course
Personal progress monitoring during eLearning course and appraisal of results obtained thanks to tracking
Tutorial support on demand (if necessary)
Contact to other learners (if planned and necessary)
No travel costs
Advantages of eLearning (company’s view)
“Mass” training (big number of learners)
Savings relative to classroom-based training indirect costs (travel, accommodation, etc.)
Flexibility and adaptability according to learner availability (time, location)
Customization and adjustment of training courses to predefined skills and teaching goals
Low logistical constraints (no room booking, employee travel, accommodation, etc.)
Precise course reporting and automated results analysis thanks to tracking (based on the eLearning platform)
Durable and updatable teaching materials (often reuseable)
Advantages of eLearning (trainer’s view)
Prerequisites for assessing learner levels
Training performed on interactive and attractive tools for both trainer and learners
Flexibility and adaptability according to availability (time, location) especial for the tutorial support
eLearning, with all its characteristics defining its advantages and disadvantages was a major breakthrough in academic education and professional training. Various Universities worldwide have incorporated eLearning solution in their curriculum and commercial companies from different fields of business have also integrated this method in their staff training programs to further enhance and develop the skills and knowledge of their workforce which can significantly contribute in the company growth in terms of production and profit.
One of the advantages of eLearning is its flexibility which allows any people willing to study but with always a limited time can access education and training by using eLearning tools and modules related to the field he or she wants to study. For students, this is major advantage in trimming down tuition fee expenses and other miscellaneous fees related to their academic pursuit.
eLearning includes all forms of electronically supported learning and teaching. eLearning is the computer and network-enabled transfer of skills and knowledge. eLearning applications and processes include Web-based learning, computer-based learning, virtual education opportunities and digital collaboration. Content is delivered via the Internet, intranet/extranet, audio or video tape, satellite TV, and CD-ROM. It can be self-paced or instructor-led and includes media in the form of text, image, animation, streaming video and audio.
In eLearning environments learners interact with learning materials, their instructors and other learners from various locations and often at various times using network technologies. So by its nature, eLearning offers significant flexibility as to when and how learning occurs. eLearning can include independent, facilitated, or collaborative approaches to learning.
eLearning can be asynchronous (meaning learners are experiencing the learning at different times) or synchronous (meaning learners are experiencing the learning at the same time) or it can incorporate both drawing on the strengths of each. Independent learning is, by definition, asynchronous. Facilitated and collaborative can be either asynchronous or synchronous learning.
The project developes C-VET training courses for training performed in formal and in non-formal C-VET education. These courses use Blended Learning as a technology enhanced method and focus on the use of multiple devices (as used by the trainees an everyday life). The innovation is the implementation of a trainee-focusing pedagogical framework based on heutagogy, the development of an all-encompassing quality enhancement framework (including also the pedagogy) and the approach to the diversity of various technical equipment (the multiple devices). The project is complementary to a Grundvig Multilateral project by transferring the theoretical developed outputs to a practical implementation in a different (but similar) educational sector.
The project combines knowledge and experience from VET training institutions with the research and innovation potential of universities.
The applicant SAFA is an important Spanish school foundation focusing on school and vocational education,
EFQBL is a VET and trainers education organisation and was founded as a dissemination tool out from a Blended Learning Multerlateral Grundtvig Project,
DigiLab from the University La Sapienza and the
University of Aveiro are specialised in innovation in technology enhanced training and the related pedagogy.
SADE is a specialist in Distance Learning and quality enhancement frameworks.
These participants ensure a consortium well-distributed in Europe.
The project results impact to the trainer community in Europe providing innovative and modern training (based on Blended Learning and including workplace-based training) with a technology enhanced approach to training using multiple devices.
EBI/EIE was founding member of the EFQBL and still is close connected to this organisation.
Web page of the project
The webpage of the project offers considerations about Blended Learning, the use of multiple devices, pedagogical considerations in context with the training and the specific training conditions in web-based C-VET training and the working trainees.
The created project results including the developed toolbox are free for use.