Social Learning with Learning Pool’s Platform
Here at Learning Pool, we recognize the importance of Social Learning. We’ve recently released a new course format that allows you to change the Learning Pool platform into a social platform.
The new Social Wall Format allows you to configure the page into an easy-to-use Social Wall. Learners can post questions, share ideas, add information and add ‘likes’ via an interface that they recognize from the get-go.
We wanted to highlight a few reasons why a Social Learning Platform can be helpful.
What is Social Learning?
Social Learning is a learning concept that recognizes that undertaking training/educational courses in a collaborative forum, where ideas can be discussed and concepts freely explored. Contributing to much higher engagement and retention than more traditional teacher/learner environments.
Learning technology solutions, such as the social learning platform, pioneer social learning features (e.g. like and share functions, chat forums, and message boards) to help learners test their knowledge, share their expertise and take ownership of their own learning.
Social Learning & Its Advantages in the Workplace
While its significance and usage in corporate training is a relatively new concept, social learning is intrinsic to the way we learn:
- as children, we learn through observation, as well as through interactions with our peers
- as we grow older, we add learning through collaboration (e.g. through group projects and assignments at school)
- and when we start working, we learn through the same approaches (during meetings, through a conversation with a colleague in the staff room, or a debate at lunch)
Arguably the best part of learning was doing it as a group with the mentality of “we’re all in it together!”
Benefits for Learners:
- learner-centric and therefore, appeals to the learner
- appeals more to millennials (those who are now starting to enter the modern workforce)
- offers support to more formal means of learning, as well as flexibility in the application
Benefits for Businesses:
- facilitates learner engagement
- triggers effective collaboration and teamwork within the company
- encourages self-organization among learners
How Do We Replicate That at a Larger Scale & Online?
Well for starters you need a topic to build your course around and that involves curating content from either your own library or from the web. Content should act as a trigger of discussion.
Once you’ve developed a little bit of structure and direction, you can start to formulate the discussion points around the content.
A few things to keep in mind when generating discussion points:
- Use open-ended questions (a yes/no answer will kill the conversation)
- Keep the discussion point on topic and relate directly back to the content it sits with (you can’t afford to have your students go off-topic)
- Encourage collaboration by replying to learners comments, inviting them to do the same with their peers
How Can We Get People to Participate?
Learning with peers in a work environment can be a fundamental part of the social learning and development process. But getting people to actually participate, especially in an online environment, has often proved a barrier.
Most social learning platforms, allow learners to create discussion by gamifying the social education process to encourage quality contributions. Having made a connection with a theory, idea or activity, learners are then motivated to create a commentary on their thought processes.
Learners and managers are also encouraged to curate the best conversations as well as vote, bookmark and recommend the most popular ideas and opinions.
The gamification features, such as points, levels and badges, exist to nudge participants through the learning process and rewards users who interact regularly using the social functions.
Taking Social Learning a Step Further
Asking for input from those taking the course can be taken a step further with user-generated content. Comments on content and generating a discussion around a certain topic are fantastic. It’s certainly the first step in formulating a social course. But with user-generated content, you can allow those taking the course to elaborate on their thoughts.
Give your users multiple options for participating in a course. This shows that you want to hear their opinions and you value their input. Giving your employees a voice and multiple avenues to broadcast on will certainly elevate the training process.
More on our Learning Platform
We’re always finding new ways to improve our Learning Platform, here are some other improvements that we’ve released:
We won’t stop there! You can keep track of future improvements on our LMS roadmap.
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