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Motivate Learners With Microlearning


October 30, 2019



Motivate Adults With Microlearning

One of the major flaws in the older learning methodologies has been the fact that they could not provide learners with enough intrinsic motivation to complete courses and learn new skills, or attain new knowledge.

Motivation is a very significant component of learning and leads to better absorption and retention of learned concepts. There are a number of factors that motivate a learner to learn better, some of them intrinsic i.e. coming from inside, and some extrinsic i.e. coming from the outside. Out of these the intrinsic factors are more important in order to develop skills and knowledge in the modern knowledge as it creates an interest in learning itself. Microlearning is such a modern digital learning methodology that has the ability to create an intrinsic motivation in learners. In this article we’ll discuss the intrinsic motivation factors in microlearning that intrinsically motivate learners.

1. Self-Competence

Self-competence is a critical factor in learning, and can be defined as the confidence a learner has on their abilities to be able to consume knowledge effectively and complete tasks in courses. Self-competence is affected by the duration of the course, and hour-long eLearning courses have an adverse effect on the learner’s confidence. Microlearning courses are a maximum of 5-minutes short, which boosts the learner’s self-competence, while not being so easy as to bore the learners. Also self-competence is boosted if learners have access to resources in the microlearning module, and can chat with other learners (their peers) within the modules, on the learning management system (LMS) or portal, or on a separate social media community. So make sure that you provide learners with these options in your learning program.

2. Interest

One of the most motivating factors in learning is interest. While the best thing, as mentioned before would be if the learners are interested in learning and developing their skills itself, it is okay if that is not the case. Microlearning deals with one learning objective or task at a time, which means that all L&D professionals have to do is target learners with specific microlearning modules based on their interests. Learner’s interests can be found out by taking surveys. Delivering learners with microlearning modules that are of interest to them, or better yet, giving them access to the learning portal where they can select microlearning modules that interest them, themselves, is a great way to motivate learners intrinsically to learn deeper and better.

3. Relevance

A number of learning methodologies of the past used to drown learners in information, where only a limited amount of information used to be of any actual use to the learner. L&D professionals as well as learners of the past could afford to teach and be taught in this manner, respectively, but the modern learner certainly can’t. The modern learner needs concentrated and relevant content in order to be motivated and to learn better, and microlearning can provide them with it. Microlearning is a learner-centric learning methodology after all, which is why it addresses all the problems learners had with previous learning methodologies. Microlearning can be made even more relevant by designing content in a way that each individual learner can relate to it.

4. Satisfaction

There are learners who find learning satisfying in itself, but those who don’t, require the element of fun or engagement in their learning to be satisfied with it. Satisfaction, of course, is very important, as it means that learners will come back to attempt more courses because they have the ability to satisfy them, just like a person returns to the food that satisfies them. Using gamification in microlearning modules will ensure that they are satisfying as well as captivating, and sometimes addictive even, which motivates learners to learn more and learn better.

As mentioned before, the idea is to help learners realize the value of learning so that they become self-directed learners who don’t need to be nudged toward learning. By continuously intrinsically motivating learners to learn, one can gradually inculcate a genuine interest for learning in them, although that will need much more than just a microlearning program. However, microlearning is a great learning strategy, and one that is necessary in this modern era. Use the above mentioned tips to improve your L&D program by implementing microlearning.


Guest Author Daniel Brown

Daniel Brown is a senior technical editor and writer that has worked in the education and technology sectors for two decades. Their background experience includes curriculum development and course book creation.

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