Why, Where, And When To Use Microlearning To Maximize Impact

Exploring The Merits Of Bite-Sized Learning

Microlearning is a skill-based approach to learning that delivers information in small, highly focused chunks, ideal for finding quick answers to specific problems. Some key principles of microlearning include focusing on a single learning objective, providing bite-sized content, utilizing multimedia elements, offering immediate feedback, and promoting self-directed learning, stimulating and engaging the learner. By breaking down information into smaller chunks, learners can easily digest and apply knowledge in a more efficient and effective manner.

Why You Should Use Microlearning

The practice of learning in small, repetitive chunks is considered an effective solution when developing skills, or learning languages and musical instruments. Increasingly, evidence shows that microlearning can be quite effective when it comes to employee training and performance. It is believed that learners learn and recall information more efficiently when provided with small, manageable chunks instead of longer-form training. Some of the major benefits of using microlearning are the following:

  • Microlearning was 17% more efficient in transferring knowledge than typical training.
  • It’s more affordable.
  • It’s flexible and reaches your learners exactly where they are.
  • Learners find it more engaging.
  • The information can be applied immediately.
  • It’s easy to follow.
  • It boosts knowledge retention.
  • It gives learners more freedom.

Why Not To Use Microlearning

Even if microlearning content has a lot of benefits for most of the audiences, there may be also some important details that I think are important and relevant to expose here as they may not apply to everyone. Let’s see some of them:

  • Microlearning cannot address every learning need.
  • It cannot be used to deliver broad, foundational knowledge on any topic.
  • It’s not effective in developing analytical skills or exploring cause-and-effect relationships.
  • While still a great amenity, on-demand microlearning needs to be available at exactly the point of need, or else it is useless.

Where To Use Microlearning

I will begin by identifying the optimal channels for microlearning. There are two primary options to consider:

  • LMS (Learning Management System)
    This platform is ideal for creating structured learning experiences that guide your audience through a clear learning path, rather than just random content.
  • CMS (Content Management System)
    In this system, you can include diverse content such as microlearning, learning materials, guides, processes, and procedures. This consolidated access to various resources aids the audience in fulfilling their role responsibilities effectively.

Microlearning content is most effective when used for the following recommended types of content:

  • As a resource for on-demand learning.
  • For self-directed learning.
  • For the 70-20-10 model.
  • To help embed learning at work.
  • As part of blended learning programs.
  • For internal Learning and Development and trainer resources.
  • As a management and leadership resource.
  • As part of mobile learning.
  • Standalone option for staff development.
  • Pre and post-workshop/session activities.

For some examples that can be provided here, we can iterate:

  • Text
    Small eBooks or short paragraphs, short presentations, quick guides, newsletters.
  • Images
    For example, infographics.
  • Demos
    Quick video representation of a specific tool, platform, site, etc.
  • Audio
    Small pieces of presentations with focused chunks on specific topics.
  • Games
    Simulate, play, and learn small information based on specific learning objectives.

When To Use Microlearning

One of the best ways to apply microlearning is on a mobile app dedicated to specific learning programs. You can use such a mobile app with microlearning content for:

  • Onboarding training.
  • Academic courses for specific audiences (who don’t have enough available time to learn in front of a computer or dedicate hours to learning).
  • Learning programs for employees or your clients.
  • When your audience simply doesn’t have much time for learning but requires various technical or specific trainings to always be prepared and up-to-date with the latest changes.

Conclusion

Microlearning can help you learn faster and easier and allows for better applicability. It may not apply to everyone depending on one’s ways of learning; while it may not be preferred by all, it can for sure provide quick content based on specific needs. In just a few words, microlearning equals small bites with a big impact. It’s up to us to choose how we prefer to learn something new: by reading a story, watching a video, diving into a book, listening to an audiobook, or exploring bite-sized content like microlearning.

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