5 Tips for Delivering a Dynamic Learning Experience

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<p><strong>Nashua, N.H. &mdash; June 5</strong><br />With a new crop of graduates across the country entering the workforce for the first time, SkillSoft PLC, a provider of e-learning and performance support solutions for global enterprises, government, education and small to midsized businesses, has outlined five tips for effectively training the Class of 2007. <br /><br />The learning styles and habits of this generation&#39;s members have been strongly affected by a number of factors, including their vast experience using technology, their constant bombardment by rich, multimedia content and the seemingly effortless way in which they multitask while using a diverse range of digital media.&nbsp; </p><p>As a result, to build the necessary foundation in job skill proficiency while successfully cultivating the leaders of tomorrow, SkillSoft recommends that businesses provide the Class of 2007 with learning experiences that are:<br /><br /><strong>1. &ldquo;Multiple-media&rdquo;-driven.</strong> Because members of the Class of 2007 grew up with televisions, computers, video games, DVDs and personal music devices, their brains are wired to receive visual and audio stimulation, often coming from multiple sources simultaneously.&nbsp;&nbsp; </p><p>Raised on the sophisticated programming techniques of television and video games, they have high expectations for all forms of communication and expect highly produced, entertaining experiences.&nbsp; Although not all training can or should be created with entertainment value as a primary objective, it is a good practice to intersperse multimedia learning and training resources that incorporate graphics, audio and video in addition to standard text. <br /><br /><strong>2. Interactive. </strong>Recent graduates entering the workforce expect interactivity as part of their learning experiences, whether it takes place in the classroom or online. As a result, static PowerPoint presentations, packets of handouts and lectures no longer are the best way to deliver information/learning.&nbsp; </p><p>Companies that want to engage their young employees should supplement static training with simulations and other forms of learning that require active participation.&nbsp; Multipath gaming techniques, for instance, put learners in control, enabling them to freely navigate a simulated workplace (complete with virtual colleagues, ringing telephones and documents on the desktop) to analyze and solve business problems. </p><p>Virtual classroom sessions also can be used to bring together groups of learners to interact and discuss topics that have been covered in online self-study.<br /><br /><strong>3. On-Demand. </strong>At their peak while multitasking, members of this generation don&#39;t have the interest or attention span to sit through an entire course from beginning to end. Instead, they prefer to learn by consuming small, digestible bits of information &mdash; a section of an e-learning course, a specific chapter within a reference work or a two- to three-minute video.&nbsp; </p><p>Organizations can cater to their comfort by making these various learning assets available on-demand. Supported by strong search functionality, employees easily can pinpoint exactly the information they need, precisely at the moment they need it. <br /><br /><strong>4. Integrated. </strong>Although classroom training always will have a role in professional development, for the most part, learning should not be a discrete event that removes employees from the workplace. Rather, organizations should bring learning to the learners, making it an inherent part of the workday that is easily accessible via the corporate intranet or portal.&nbsp; </p><p>This affords employees the flexibility to pick and choose, cafeteria style, the exact combination of information resources they need for the work at hand, ensuring greater retention, productivity and improved performance.<br /><br /><strong>5. Mobile. </strong>Constantly on the go, this generation relies on portable devices such as cell phones, BlackBerries and Treo to do everything from making phone calls and checking e-mail to browsing the Internet and playing games.&nbsp; </p><p>Organizations can take advantage of the growing ubiquity of portable devices to make learning assets that were traditionally only available at the office accessible to workers, regardless of their location, so that they can capitalize on downtime to develop new competencies or hone existing skills.&nbsp; </p><p>In addition, podcasts provide another effective mechanism for learning on the go, as information on business issues, trends and initiatives can be downloaded to laptops, iPods and other MP3 players for quick, easy consumption.<br /><br />&ldquo;We congratulate the Class of 2007 for all of their hard work and accomplishments,&rdquo; said John Ambrose, senior vice president of strategy, corporate development and emerging business. &ldquo;As these graduates enter the workforce and begin the next chapter of their lives, learning will play an even more critical role in their continued development and success.&nbsp; </p><p>&quot;Recognizing the unique learning needs and preferences of this generation, SkillSoft continues to develop innovative new products and an extensive library of rich learning assets, enabling businesses to provide employees at all levels with dynamic, engaging learning experiences.&rdquo; </p>

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