Moving from traditional instructor-led training (ILT) to virtual ILT (vILT) is an easy decision to make as many factors today encourage distance learning. This move may be a simple business decision but transforming ILT to vILT requires planning and strong instructional design.
10 Tips for effective vILT design
The key to effective vILT design is to focus on keeping learners engaged and interested throughout the entire session. The following ten tips are ways for you to make your vILT successful through clever, thoughtful design:
1. Avoid long stretches of one-way communication by adding interactivity – e.g., activities, quizzes, whiteboard capturing, small group breakout rooms – throughout your session.
2. Kick-off subtopics with thought-provoking questions to invite learner discussion.
3. Call on specific learners, if necessary, to compel involvement. You want to teach learners early on that they’re expected to contribute.
4. Make use of the virtual platform’s capabilities – e.g., polls, whiteboards, chat windows, breakout rooms – to drive learner engagement.
5. Move knowledge content into pre-session microlearning or reading materials, so vILT time can be devoted to practicing application.
6. Ensure facilitators are well-prepared for the session. If there is any downtime during the training, you’ll lose the learners. A clear, detailed facilitator guide will help with their preparation.
7. If your facilitator is not a subject matter expert, consider adding one as either a second facilitator or as the moderator, so learners can get quick, accurate responses to their questions.
8. If possible, have a moderator who runs the technical aspects of the course – e.g., chat monitoring, slide advances, whiteboard documenting – so the facilitator can focus on learning, not technology.
9. Use high-quality presentation materials. Don’t use text-heavy, bulleted slides. Use graphic treatments that convey information and highlight key points.
10. Incorporate short, engaging videos to illustrate concepts and drive learning. You can use TED Talks, YouTube videos, or even segments from TV and movies to keep learners engaged.
VILT is a cost-effective way to train a dispersed workforce quickly; it just takes great design and a skilled facilitator to make it work.
Feel free to reach out to us at Judge Learning Solutions if you have questions. We have expert vILT designers, as well as excellent facilitators to support your efforts. Contact us (JLS@judge.com) to learn more about how we can help.
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