The Basics of Microlearning

According to Microsoft, modern humans supposedly have an average attention span of 8 seconds. That’s even shorter than the infamously short memory of a goldfish that clocks in at 9 seconds! Whether or not this is true, we’ve all seen how easily people can get distracted or lose interest in something. The book, The One Thing, explains that the average American employee is interrupted every eleven minutes so those are the segments we have grown accustomed to working within. Due to this realization, many companies have adopted new methods for training their staff, having a positive impact on learning speed and retention.

This new type of training involves the use of a technique called microlearning.

What is Microlearning?

Microlearning is the use of bite-sized pieces of training, making learning new skills faster and more efficient. Further, microlearning creates a more palatable training process. The ideal duration for a microlearning session is somewhere in the 2-5 minute range, during which time a person would achieve a specific learning objective, such as learning the specs of a new product offered by your company or a checklist for responding to a customer complaint. The types of lessons that can be taught using microlearning vary greatly, and this style of learning provides numerous benefits to both the learner and the organization.

Why Use Microlearning?

Microlearning can be used on its own or in conjunction with more traditional training as a means for reinforcing the information provided in the long-form training session. This helps with retention as a large amount of information is forgotten over time if not reinforced, For example, the Forgetting Curve claims nearly 80% of new information is forgotten within 30 days if not reinforced before then. Microlearning allows for quick and easy follow-ups, enhancing knowledge retention without requiring the learner to spend another day away from their usual work.

Microlearning also can be used as reference materials on the fly. By providing microlearning through various devices such as mobile phones, employees could access the information they needed as a quick refresher on the job site. These lessons can be consumed easily and accessed readily for optimal convenience. The mobility and ease of use allow users to reinforce their knowledge on their time schedule instead of only during formal training sessions.

Microlearning is affordable thanks to its simple modular nature. Companies can create microlearning lessons as they realize the need for that specific piece of training. Instead of developing an entire curriculum and setting aside hours or days of training, microlearning can be used as a component of on-the-job training. This type of training is especially appreciated by those who are more hands-on learners and self-starters. Later on, microlearning lessons can be compiled into a full training manual.

The flexibility offered by microlearning allows the organization and the learner to adapt the lessons to their specific needs. Its modular nature and ease of digestion make it easy and relatively inexpensive to implement on a trial basis. Microlearning can help organizations tap into the potential of their employees even if they do have the attention span of a goldfish. Contact us today at Lynch Law to learn more about the power of microlearning or to ask any questions you might have concerning legal matters. Our team of learning, HR, legal and strategy experts can implement your learning and development program to enhance your organization’s productivity and effectiveness.




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