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5 Ways Social Media Is Impacting eLearning

Listen: We don’t need to tell you the impact social media has made on how we, as human beings, interact and engage with one another. 

But it really can’t be overstated, either.

It has completely reshaped how we establish, define and maintain our interpersonal relationships and connect with the world. 

Anchored by the concepts of sharing and community, we happily and readily share status updates, photos, and videos about nearly every nuanced area of our lives, often in 140 characters or less.

But social media’s uses don’t end at sharing what you had for lunch.

In fact, as millennials join the workforce, social media has the potential to impact and further shape training as this generation has grown up using technology and social media applications at home and at school, in their free time and during training time, for business and for pleasure.

So in order to meet millennials – and the multigenerational 3.48 billion people who also use social media – where they are, here are five benefits to incorporating social media in eLearning.

Increased Engagement

“eLearning provides multiple avenues for communicating on diverse social platforms. Consider social media to engage students. Add a Twitter badge to your course homepage and use a hashtag to push posts with course-relevant content to your students to help build a sense of classroom community.

“Consider also including embedded audio and video, chat rooms, instant messaging, broadcast text messaging, and homepage announcements to socially engage users. Additionally, explanatory screencast videos have become increasingly easy and inexpensive to create and provide yet another channel for communication.”

For more about increasing engagement, read on here.

Gamification

“Currently, badges and leaderboards are often considered the new sweepstakes and loyalty rewards. Badges are visual rewards earned as learners progress through a course or curriculum. They help display progress and make incremental learning more visible. Whenever possible, provide a place where learners can prominently display badges to leverage the social effectiveness of gamification.

“Bonus Tip: Gamification should be inherently social and seamlessly integrated with social media so users cannot only share their achievements but motivate their peers, too.”

For more about gamification, read on here.

Compliance

“Collaborative learning allows employees to work together, enriching learning through interaction with others. And with social media, learning can happen in an informal setting, at any time from anywhere. Social media can help encourage the exchange of ideas and knowledge while supporting collaborative work, all while content is organically and effortlessly churned by the users themselves—without expensive expert input.”

For more on effective and engaging compliance training, read on here.

Personalization 

“Think about every digital technology you use. From your browser to your email, to your social media, to your streaming devices, everything is personalized – some even using your name – and boasting distinct customization options.

“In eLearning, personalization can influence the learning environment, such as its font sizes, colors, backgrounds, and themes, its audio, video, text, and graphics, and its interactions between the facilitator, student and learning content with gamification, quizzes, online discussions, adaptive learning approaches, tutorials, and more.

“Incorporate content from the learners’ personal environment, browsing habits and preferences, such as blogs, social media sites, and more.”

For more on personalization, read on here.

Connection

“… nearly 43% of Americans go online for their news and two-thirds of Americans get their news from social media. This means you can easily leverage analytic tools to find out exactly where they spend their time and what’s on their minds. 

“And nearly every social platform attaches analytics to help you learn more about your audience. You can also link accounts to social listening tools such as Hootsuite to monitor trends and mentions in real time.”

For more on connecting with your audience, read on here.

Organizations should now be actively seeking ways to leverage social media’s community in order to reinforce education and learning. Because by creating an open or closed group for courses, uploading course content, assignments, and tests, sharing relevant links, and encouraging online discussions and collaboration, you meet your learners exactly where they are – and where they like to be.