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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Connected Learning: the new, socially-interactive approach to online training | TrainingZone - Training

Photo: Nic Pillow
Nic Pillow, CEO - Rhizome Live Ltd notes, "New online approach - Connected Learning - can provide even greater interaction, engagement, and training success than does the smallest of classes."

Photo: spainter_vfx/iStock

Online elearning has been hugely successful in allowing training to be delivered cost-effectively to very large audiences. However, training that’s purely online often results in a reduced experience and quality of learning compared to interactive classroom training.

By contrast, we have found that a new online approach - Connected Learning - can provide even greater interaction, engagement, and training success than does the smallest of classes.

A new educational technique  
Connected Learning was pioneered by Jonathan Worth in Phonar - an award-winning university photography course. From an inauspicious start with 9 students in the back-room of a cinema, within 3 years:
Learn by talking
The guiding principle is that people often learn best by talking to each other. In classroom training it’s the group discussions - or even the coffee breaks - that bring at least as much value as any presentation.

Similarly with Connected Learning: the focus is not on presenting content, but on fostering discussions between participants. Significant time is devoted to getting everyone talking to anyone and everyone else.
What engages a participant is not just contributing whenever they want but in getting replies to what they have contributed. Whether a response challenges or builds on their comment, it prompts them to think much more deeply about it. They also realise that their contribution has influenced the conversation.

Interaction that scales  
In conventional training, the level of interaction is inevitably limited because a trainer can only answer one question at a time. But with Connected Learning we found that the larger the audience, the richer the experience for any individual: there are more discussions for them to join, and a broader range of differing perspectives.

Text-based discussion  
It’s clearly not feasible to have multiple participants speaking aloud at the same time. Discussions therefore need to be in written text, as in group messaging or social media. We have found it best to use a dedicated discussion tool integrated with a messaging platform that’s already well used by the audience; but a stand-alone system or ad-hoc tools are also perfectly viable.

Source: TrainingZone