An e-learning methodology in 5 stages. Step 2: Demonstration

In this series of five articles, i’m exploring a methodology for e-learning: Context, Demonstration, Exploration, Reflection and Footsteps. When you’re looking at training people in skills and behaviours, it’s fairly fundamental to demonstrate what those things look like in action. It’s not necessarily the case that we just want to demonstrate good practice though, it’s possible that we might want to demonstrate poor examples, or indeed, it might not be as clear cut as things being ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, so we may want to demonstrate a range of examples of something in action. Partly, this will depend upon what learning method we are choosing. If we want to get people to adhere to a specific process, then clearly we should be showing them good examples, compliant examples, of how that process should be completed. If we are training people in conversational frameworks, it’s a little less clear. We certainly want to show them a good example, but a good example is not something that you can copy exactly yourself. From a learning perspective, what we are looking to achieve is to help people to develop a framework for their own conversational style. To emulate the essence of what we are showing them. To do this, we want to demonstrate a range of examples, all good, but good in different ways. If there is no ‘one‘ right way, it’s better to show a range of good examples, but have a focus on helping people to understand what makes those examples good and work out their own conversational styles to use. This is a natural learning process; inherently we learn from experience, both our own and observation of others. Learning how to run a good interview is a mixture of understanding theory (e.g. funneling techniques) and experiencing it yourself, either first hand or through observation. Within demonstrations, we need to find ways of showing what the core behaviours or skills are that are trying to illustrate. One way is to use a ‘guide’ character, who can literally walk into the scene and highlight specific points. Video is used extensively in e-learning for ‘demonstrations‘, and there is often a view that this is really the best use of e-learning, a belief that you can’t really train skills through this format, but i’d disagree with that. Sure, you can’t have the level of skill drilling and roleplay that you get within a workshop, but you can achieve greater consistency and, with the right type of interaction, achieve an element of practice. Whether it’s systems training, skills or knowledge, demonstration is essential to set the standards of what we are training.

About julianstodd

Author, Artist, Researcher, and Founder of Sea Salt Learning. My work explores the context of the Social Age and the intersection of formal and social systems.
This entry was posted in E-Learning, Learning Methodology, Theory and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to An e-learning methodology in 5 stages. Step 2: Demonstration

  1. Pingback: Creating effective blended learning solutions: a methodology | Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

  2. Pingback: How to design great e-Learning: ask the right questions | Julian Stodd's Learning Blog

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