Can you recall any school memories from back when you were a student?
What exactly is coming to your mind?
Maybe you remember that constant feeling of boredom and those regular classes where no student gets to be a part of the conversation or participate somehow.
Or maybe, you remember those moments when the teachers were fond of their students raising hands, talking, asking questions, or making them play games to understand the subject better. In other words, you might remember interactivity and its positive impacts on your approach to the class.
Well, things are pretty much the same outside the class as well.
This article will talk about the notion of interactivity in E-Learning, its key benefits, basic levels, and how to make your content interactive and appealing to your users.
Buckle up. You’re about to see the future.
What is Interactivity in E-Learning?
Interactive E-Learning is the type of learning in which the user is provided with a great chance to be more involved and engaged with the content and learning process instead of being a passive listener. The method offers an opportunity to interact with the content by doing or thinking. The actions may include a simple click, multiple choice quizzes, drag-and-drops, a question that’s asked, or text input.
Interactivity has been proven to have a significant impact on the effectiveness of the eLearning process. In this article, you will find everything you need to know about eLearning interactivity and tips on how to make your own content interactive.
Let’s start with its benefits.
Benefits of E-Learning Interactivity
1- It activates learning mechanisms.
Interactivity in E-Learning keeps learners engaged and inspired and thus leads to improved learning results.
It has also been found and proven that E-Learning interactivity activates & preserves long-term memory and strengthens attention which are both vital elements of our learning mechanisms.
How does it achieve all this?
The answer is quite simple. Through the usage of incentive methods.
These methods trigger the human learning mechanisms and encourage the person to be involved.
What are these methods?
They can be simple things like adding short quizzes throughout the E-learning process and intensifying the information flow that’s being digested. These quizzes usually pop up as an interactive tool to be able to attract the learner’s notice. The learner’s answers will be given in the frame of results of what has been learned along the way.
This way, it becomes easier to determine if the learner is fully digesting and practicing what they are learning.
Another wise method that’s just as effective is the usage of 3-D virtual presentations, wide and panoramic images, interactive stories, and photos that will provide different angles of what’s being shown as well as rotation or zooms of that specific image.
Going further, this process can offer even more benefit if it includes live chats, podcasts, videos that will allow the learner to take a nice break from reading tons of words.
2- It makes it easier to incorporate new information into existing knowledge.
In other words, it encourages reflection. Reflection is the initial step in the process of learning where learners combine new information with past knowledge.
Put more simply, reflection is what you’re aiming for while you’re taking on this journey of including interactivity in your E-learning module. The reason why is that reflection causes practice, the most wanted outcome that you receive from learners after they’re done with your module.
What interactivity does here for you has a lot to do with its capability to require learners to take a step back and think twice. It needs them to take a second to respond and control their learning. After their responses, the learners will be provided with valuable feedback, which is the key element to any interactive E-Learning process.
3- It increases engagement. A lot.
The Glossary of Education Reform defines the term ”engagement” as the attention, curiosity, interest, optimism, and passion that the learner shows when they are being taught.
Similarly, the learner engagement that’s extended to the level of motivation, in this case, is probably one of the most effective benefits of Interactive E-Learning.
What’s the reason behind Interactive Learning that makes it such an important aspect of learner engagement?
Well, it creates room for a sense of involvement.
I’m sure you’ll agree with me when I say that the best way to fulfill your job as a learner is often through the application of knowledge and that satisfactory feeling of being an active participant.
I’m not the only one to suggest it:
A study conducted by Gallup proved that “Student engagement has a significantly positive impact on student growth.”
And this is exactly what interactivity achieves. It creates opportunities for learners to apply what they’ve learned and engage with the process in the most productive way.
4- It boosts knowledge retention.
Knowledge retention has a very strong connection to the quality of your learning process and what stays with you afterward.
How interactivity steps in and helps boost knowledge retention should not come as a surprise.
Interactive activities that are involved in the learning process create curiosity and interest, and these two lead to better and longer knowledge retention. As mentioned before, multimedia elements, case scenarios, quiz questions, and rewards have the ability to transform even the most unpleasant processes into an engaging & catchy e-Learning experience. These elements help learners create a motivating, emotionally driven, self-directed learning that will be unforgettable for many years to come.
5- It revives emotions.
Learning has no limit. But memory does.
In everyday lives, people are bombarded with all kinds of different information but at the end of the day, they are not very likely to remember the material unless they had an emotional response to it. This is because emotion has a very strong impact on attention, making it a key factor in maintaining focus as well as building motivating action & behavior.
Interactive E-Learning influences learners’ emotional reactions by including meaningful stories, powerful value, surprising stats, and awakening questions that arouse critical thinking.
With these materials, it can be examined that learners build self-motivation and satisfaction as they keep answering provocative questions, take control of their own personal processes and consequently contribute to their learning journey.
4 Levels of Interactivity in E-Learning
Hi there. Look who I have here. Today, Bart Simpson will go through the 4 levels of interactivity in E-Learning for you. He kinda looks a little tense behind that smile. Let’s start his journey already.
There are 4 stages of interactivity in E-Learning. The first one is:
1. Passive E-Learning Interactivity Level
Okay, so, Bart Simpson is experiencing this first level of E-Learning right now. It’s called ”passive E-Learning Interactivity Level” At this stage, Bart is enhancing zero interactivity. However, he’s provided with clear and to the point content-based E-Learning and he is offered broad research, recordings, podcasts, and basic pictures & illustrations.
2. Limited E-Learning Interactivity Level
As the name suggests, Bart at this level only has access to limited interaction. He might be required to combine interactive activities with the learning module such as problem areas, and sight & sound movements. At this stage, Bart has a slightly deeper sense of control of the process.
3. Moderate E-Learning Interactivity Level
At this level of interactivity, Bart is encountered with a more moderate and modern interaction module. He relatively has more control over his own learning process. This level may come with more come complex sound & visuals, cooperation, stories, and multimedia.
4. Full E-Learning Interactivity Level
At this point, Bart Simpson has full control over his learning condition. What he always ached for, right?😆
He is required to collaborate and participate fully and is provided with criticism and constructive feedback that will help him with slight changes and lead him to what’s next.
This level includes interactive diversions, modified sound and/or recordings, symbols, experimental stories, and case scenarios in addition to interactive multimedia.
This level is by far the highest stage of improved E-Learning interactivity.
Thanks for being a part of this! See you soon.
9 Ways to Make Your E-Learning Content Interactive
Now that you are done with learning how much interactivity does for eLearning, you might be wondering more about how you can create great interactive eLearning content that works smoothly.
There are a number of ways to make your content interactive, some traditional methods, some innovative methods. Here are 10 of them combined for you:
1- Use a User Onboarding Software for Educating Customers
A User Onboarding software is relatively a more innovative approach to creating interactive content. But before going further, let’s get the understanding of user onboarding off your list.
Put simply, user onboarding is the process of enhancing a user’s success with a service and/or product. It allows you to uncover the true value of your service. It’s the very first step you should focus on to gain long-term loyal users.
And what software does this?
I have a perfect suggestion that’s primarily designed for this purpose and continues to do a great job improving new users’ learning process in a fun, engaging way.
UserGuiding is the whole package of user onboarding software that can be used to create interactive user manuals and many other in-app UX elements.
The product comes as a no-code platform, which means anyone can sign up for the product and start discovering how it helps make the learning process of new users interactive.
Here’s a list of things it offers to make use of interactivity:
Interactive User Guides
An interactive user guide is the most effective way to educate users.
With UserGuiding, you can create step-by-step instructions that are fun to follow, easy to understand and navigate. These guides can even be customized and tailored to the demands of specific customer personas so that each user can achieve the maximum value out of your platform.
Perfectly designed in-app messages that you can send to your users during their process can and will increase engagement and take your feature adoption game to the next level.
With UserGuiding, customization is always matters. The platform lets you display different messages to numerous groups of users, which are triggered by custom events. This kind of personalized experience is always ready for you to reach the right user at the right time.
No matter what the subject is, users always need a sense of improvement.
User onboarding checklists that will be monitored to your users during their onboarding process is what will take you there.
In their onboarding process, your users will regularly check the tasks they have successfully completed and go through a gamified experience that will encourage them to do better. With UserGuiding, you can create custom checklists that show the way to different guides, which will then enable users to explore many other features.
You can be a part of UserGuiding for FREE and benefit from the amazing interactive experiences that will make life easier for your users!
2- Encourage Learners to Contribute
When the learners get started with their new learning environment, they are already filled with a certain amount of knowledge.
Having the learners contribute their knowledge via taking an active part in online course sessions, or group studies is another effective way to make them feel encouraged.
Contribution-based learning can offer the learners a valuable, relevant result that they can share with fellow learners and inspire those who are relatively new to the process.
3- Realize the Importance of Feedback
Feedback at any chance is a vast opportunity that creates room for interaction. As soon as the learners leave their opinions, how you choose to respond to them might also have other upsides for streamlining plans and programs & making them more relevant to the issue.
4- Try Sneak Peeks
Sneak peeks can achieve a lot when it comes to grabbing your target audience’s attention. They often work as a compelling hook where the user is caught and stuck.
You can create an interactive sneak peek on your website simply by sharing a part of your content – not too much- or direct a question.
Once the users are done with sneak peeks, make sure you have created an easy way to keep the interaction going; you can achieve this via inserting internal links or showing the next step with pop-up forms.
5- Come up with Animations
When it comes to E-Learning, something as small as creating animations can change many things.
They are a great idea in that they can appeal to the audience in terms of imagery, visuals, cute GIFs, friendly messages, or emojis. They will also add liveliness to your content.
How to create them?
You can hire an experienced content team to create the animations, buy them online, or you can make your original animations to engage your users yourself!
Alternatively, you can also include audio narratives to the animated characters so that they are even more fun to follow. In that case, your users will simply click on the character to make it talk about the key information.
6- Let people decide for themselves
You can especially consider this advice if you want things to happen fast. Letting your users decide for themselves will speed up the learning process -since the users will handpick the most relevant content for themselves- it will also give the learners the sense of control of topics and help them feel more involved & engaged.
You can of course step in anytime you think is necessary by giving simple recommendations along the way but keep in m find that with this approach, your learners will feel empowered and trusted.
7- Encourage Content Ratings
Like the feedback part, content ratings also serve the purpose of opinion flow.
It’s scary to think that you may never fully understand how your users feel about your content unless, well, you ask for feedback directly.
There’s no need to brainstorm on it; a to-the-point five-star system works great for most kinds of content out there. People love rating things; they rate restaurants, clothes, movies, you name it. This will turn around to your benefit and allow your users to offer opinions, make comments, and provide you with more personalized feedback.
All you need to do is require a rating at the end of a process or the bottom of a landing page; the rest is up to your users’ humble opinions, and of course, your ability to consider this feedback as your content progressively changes.
8- Make it visually appealing
A magic word for you: Visuals.
Did you know that 65 percent of the current population are visual learners?
This means that a vast majority of people need to see information to comprehend it. In addition, visuals help our brains work very fast and studies have also shown that the brain can process images and videos 60,000 times faster than text, making visual-based learning processes remarkably more effective.
What you can do here is create relevant layouts for your storytelling, transforming your content into a quick short story that will grasp the user’s attention. You can choose popular designs such as a comic book layout to make your story interesting & appealing.
After collecting relevant imagery and putting them together like a puzzle, you will have yourself an eye-catching collage that people will want to pay attention to.
9- Create Interactive Maps
There are many ways to share in-depth data with your users. First, there is creating boring charts or explaining everything in endless details of a text. Then there is an interactive map option that can make data more exciting and understandable for your users.
By building interactive maps with various tools such as Tableau Public or Mapme, you can learn how to make your content interactive and interesting – these tools enable users to turn black and white data into colorful, beautiful maps.
You can add click options on specific map points that provide further information to make your maps more engaging and appealing.
Here are a couple of examples of the interactive maps made by Tableau Public & Mapme:
Now that you’ve fully exposed yourself to the notion of interactivity in E-Learning, you know you shouldn’t underestimate the power of great interactive content. It has the ability to take your brand to the next level.
That was it for today, see you next time!
Keep engaging, finding new ways to engage, and never stop testing!
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you increase interactivity in eLearning?
- Use a User Onboarding Software for educating customers
- Encourage learners to contribute
- Realize the importance of feedback
- Try sneak peeks
- Come up with animations
- Let people decide for themselves
- Encourage content ratings
- Make it visually appealing
- Create interactive maps
Is online learning interactive?
Whether online learning is interactive is dependent on the approach of those interested in E-Learning. Interactive learning is a hands-on approach that allows learners to improve their engagement level with the content and retain more knowledge. It’s also helpful in problem-solving and critical thinking skills, so, it’s a great idea to take action and make your online learning content interactive and instructive more than ever.
Why do we say eLearning interactive mode?
E-learning Interactive mode refers to the learning module which possesses a wide variety of multimedia types such as audio/video files, infographics, podcasts, 3D models, presentations, case scenarios, visuals, and simulations. These tools help make the existing content more engaging, interesting, and catchy.