eLearning provides on-demand training to any location with an Internet connection. With the right planning and an interactive and engaging design, it can, in many cases, be just as effective as face-to-face training. eLearning is a great option for learners in multiple locations with busy schedules. eLearning works best for information that does not need frequent updating.
The most traditional type of instruction is in-person, face-to-face classroom training, led by a trainer who relies on lectures, followed by test questions to measure comprehension. However, experience has taught us that increased interaction, including discussions, problem-solving tasks, case studies, and hands-on practice, will yield better outcomes. In a well-designed course, learners are immersed in the training experience as they are asked not only to absorb but also to perform, along with trainers who may or may not be experts in the subject matter.
Structured on-the-job training (OJT) is especially effective for companies that need to ramp up new team members quickly and who have strong trainers to teach new employees, and where people can come onsite to a central location for the training. OJT gives learners an opportunity to observe their trainers in their regular work environment, which yields powerful training results.
With self-paced training, learners receive a training manual that they read and work through on their own to learn about a specific topic. Learners answer questions throughout each topic to help them consider and apply the concepts and then complete a series of questions at the end of each section to validate their knowledge.
Distance learning is where learners and facilitators in different locations connect over the Internet in live sessions. Distance learning combines the personal interaction of classroom training with some of the convenience of eLearning, making it an excellent option when learners are in different locations but need immediate feedback and live explanations.