Canada Association of Tourism Employees

How To Fight The Learner Engagement Problem By Creating Immersive Studying Experiences

The Learner Engagement Challenge

Changes in workplace dynamics, with more people working in different locations than their traditional workplaces, have created widespread fears and distractions among the workforce. Delivering virtual training in such an environment is extremely difficult as it is difficult to keep remote learners focused and engaged.

The result? Increasing virtual training abandonment rates, declining program completion rates, and a general lack of optimization in the use of training resources for businesses. Providing comprehensive learning experiences for remote learners can address these challenges.

What is immersive learning?

Traditional approaches to learning have relied on media such as audio, print and video to deliver impactful learning experiences. While these approaches can result in limited learner engagement, newer approaches use other senses such as sound, image, and touch to deliver deeper immersive learning experiences that encourage greater involvement in the learning process.

Immersive learning is an approach to delivering virtual learning experiences that go beyond traditional passive learning, where trainers deliver and learners listen, view and take notes.

Immersive training aims to involve virtual learners more in the learning process. They do this by collaborating, practicing, doing, and experimenting in their immersive environment.

How does immersive learning support the learning process?

The virtual learning process is a process in which knowledge is conveyed in a virtual environment on the one hand and received remotely on the other.

Learner engagement is key to successfully assimilating (and then applying) new knowledge. The immersive learning approaches support this process in two ways:

  • First, a virtual immersive learning experience delivers knowledge in a way that engages and engages distant learners, unlike other approaches of Instructor-Led Training (ILT) or Virtual Instructor-Led Training (VILT).
  • Second, and more importantly, the immersive training enables remote learners to practice what they have learned – problem solving, decision making, critical thinking – in a safe virtual environment.

The effects of working with trainers, classmates and colleagues in the workplace on distant learners, albeit virtual, lead participants to participate in training programs and further encourage learner engagement [1].

How can you create an immersive learning experience?

L&D teams can use a variety of strategies, approaches, and tools to deliver a comprehensive learning experience to a virtual learner. This can include the use of real world scenarios, branching simulations, interactive storytelling, and gamification. Other immersive training strategies such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), mobile apps, and video-based performance support tools can equally help learners immerse themselves in their training world.

How does it help you create an immersive learning experience to meet the challenge of learner engagement?

Monotony leads to withdrawal. In today’s remote working / learning world, it is very easy for “bored” learners to break loose. The challenge for L&D teams is: How do you encourage student engagement while delivering a fun and successful training program?

The answer lies in using training approaches like immersive training to engage learners on multiple fronts: logical (logos), ethical (ethos), and emotional (pathos).

Trainers can use a variety of supportive tools and practices, such as: B. Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), moderated discussions, simulated use cases and branch-based exercises to provide a comprehensive learning experience.

A training program based on urgent appeals promotes the willingness of the participants to learn and thus promotes the engagement of the learners. Learners who get involved in the learning process through active participants rather than passive listeners (and dormant consumers of content!) Are far more engaged learners. They absorb more and transfer what they have learned far more effectively to the workplace than passive learners.

What are the top considerations for creating immersive learning experiences?

To encourage learner engagement, L&D teams need to consider the following:

  • Build meaningful immersive use cases
    Virtual learners are more eager to engage when they can relate to the use cases. Make your story, use cases, and scenarios as realistic as possible.
  • Often incorporate learning points for learners
    Creating a comprehensive learning experience takes more than just replacing video or VR content with text-based note-taking. Add interactivity, feedback, experimentation, and collaboration opportunities to the tutorial for the most immersive training experience possible.
  • Build compelling learning experiences through technology
    Simply porting existing training courses into a virtual environment does not force learners to immerse themselves in the training program and engage with the content. L&D teams need to learn to use technologies like VR, AI, AR in combination with supportive strategies (more on that later) like gamification, branching simulations and scenario-based learning to deliver a comprehensive learning experience that fosters engagement.

What immersive training strategies can help you create an immersive learning experience?

With other distractions and worries, virtual learners can more easily detach themselves from their learning programs. Here are some comprehensive training strategies to help you meet the learner engagement challenge:

  • Gamification
    By introducing fun and competition – combined with rewards and recognition – during the learning journey, Gamification provides a compelling, comprehensive training experience that motivates learners to engage.
  • Story based learning
    Stories appeal to distant learners on a higher emotional level than traditional approaches to learning. They therefore lead to a better engagement of the learners and lead to a higher retention and memory of training content.
  • Branching simulations
    A compelling goal of virtual immersive training is to help learners engage with the program by learning the consequences of their actions and decisions. Branch simulations are a great strategy to accomplish this goal.
  • AR / VR / ER / MR
    Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Extended Reality (ER) and Mixed Reality (MR) offer virtual learners realistic experiences [2]. From the comfort of their home, car, or other safe environment, immerse themselves in remote digital experiences to learn new skills, improve old ones, and reinforce new behaviors. This encourages distant learners to more easily engage with the training program.
  • NextGen strategies
    L&D teams can also use a variety of NextGen strategies to encourage greater learner engagement, including app-based learning, micro-learning, m-learning, and predictive learning (based on AI).
  • Video based learning
    In addition to creating an environment for distant learners to immerse themselves in learning, video-based learning provides learning opportunities, performance support at work, and comprehensive training options to motivate learners by learning on the go.
  • Scenario based learning
    By encouraging learners to deal with the scenarios presented, this strategy not only encourages learner behavior change, but also contributes to long-term performance improvements.

Farewell Thoughts

A well-designed immersive learning experience goes a long way in keeping learners interested in virtual training. It also helps learners stay busy longer, which ensures better graduation rates for the program. In addition, increased learner engagement leads to better knowledge absorption, longer retention, more efficient behavior change, and broader improvement in workplace performance.

I hope this article provides the necessary insight into how L&D teams can use immersive learning to address the learner engagement challenge. In the meantime, if you have specific questions, contact me or leave a comment below.


[1] 15 tips and strategies for engaging remote learners through effective virtual training

[2] Virtual Reality in eLearning – Using VR as a Microlearning Nugget for Induction and Onboarding

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EI design

EI Design is a leading provider of learning and performance support solutions focused on transforming learning – keeping it relevant, impactful and ongoing.

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