Keeping learners motivated

One of the challenges L&D professionals face is creating keeping learners motivated to learn. Creating an elearning experience the learner will engage with is at the heart of this challenge. We know that adults learn best when motivated to learn and this is driven by their need to understand why they should learn something. So how can we keep them motivated?

Self-determination theory by Edward Deci and Richard Ryan suggests that people require autonomy, competence, and relatedness to satisfy their psychological needs; tapping into these characteristics will help guide the design of your elearns. We outline some strategies you can use to design elearning that keeps your learners motivated.

Create real life issues the learner needs to solve, this will allow them to use their current knowledge and identify what they don’t know. If it’s useful to the job they are doing learners are more motivated to learn. So keep training relevant.

Fail, fail better.

Samuel Beckett’s quote is relevant. Give learners freedom to fail; for example, applying game mechanics in elearning where the learner fails but can attempt to improve will motivate learners to improve. Games challenge learners to try and solve a problem, this also provides scope for collaborative learning.

Be creative; tell a story where the character has to overcome obstacles that the learners will identify with. Learners are more likely to invest in the story and follow the character through their journey as it replicates an on the job training experience. Use creative writing techniques such as mystery, suspense to write learning content that will keep the learner interested.

On demand learning through job aides, wikis and performance support systems creates an environment the learner knows they can access anytime.

Apply the ‘What’s in it for me?’ principle. Learners are motivated when they understand why they need knowledge, to perform better, to improve their customer service – these are measurable through performance. Knowing the benefits increases learner m motivation.

Remember what learning feels like; what motivates you;  how much time you invest in learning – this is what your learners are also thinking.

Include a variety of learning methods: social learning, online delivery, team-based learning. Varying the method will keep learners active, interested and curious about what they will learn and how they learn it.

Demonstrate that the learners have acquired the knowledge and can apply it; rewarding learning also motivates learners. This could be in the form of recognition vouchers, a raise, and verbal praise.

Using a variety of strategies in the interactivity and content of your training will motivate your learners. Assess your training at regular intervals using feedback and evaluation forms, this will keep your content fresh and energised.




Previous Article

Next Article