If you are planning eLearning corporate training for your employees, you are probably struggling to choose between synchronous and asynchronous learning. The battle between synchronous and asynchronous learning is never-ending. Even though there is a preference for anytime-anywhere learning, we cannot disregard the importance of learning in the presence of an instructor. This post lets us fully understand the synchronous eLearning model and its potential benefits.
What is Synchronous eLearning?
Synchronous learning refers to a learning model where all learners learn at the same time in the presence of an instructor. Instructor-led offline sessions are an example of synchronous learning.
Synchronous eLearning uses web conferences and virtual classrooms for in-person training sessions. Synchronous eLearning applies the same model in an online interface. Many institutions have been using the model to provide degrees to oversee students; however, COVID-19 caused the increased use of this model.
Now that we know what synchronous eLearning means, let’s understand its benefits.
Benefits of Synchronous eLearning
While synchronous learning in an offline environment has many advantages, the digitization of this method has made it more effective and convenient for employees. Here are some benefits of Synchronous eLearning.
Cheaper than offline sessions
One disadvantage that offline synchronous training sessions had was the cost of conducting the training. To name a few, we had the cost of the venue, refreshments, stationery, electricity bills, instructor fees, and travel expenses for the employees. Moreover, a part of your workforce was getting paid while they weren’t contributing to the production.
eLearning reduces your learning and development budget considerably. Except for the instructor fees and salaries, you can save the rest of the money. The results that eLearning can produce are commendable; hence you are getting an improved return on your investment with synchronous eLearning.
It still maintains the human element.
Many argue that online eLearning is robotic and lacks the human touch. Training with on-demand videos seems very impersonal. Moreover, because everyone learns at their preferred time, the interaction between the learners is also close to zero.
The synchronous eLearning method, however, retains the human element among all the digital stuff. Instructors and learners can interact in real-time, ask questions, give and receive feedback, etc.
Can complete training from anywhere
The digital elements in the synchronous learning environment make the learning process more flexible. Your employees don’t have to force themselves to travel from their home to the training venue and sit for long hours to get the training. eLearning allows its learners to attend sessions from anywhere. They can train in their room or the hotel room if they are traveling and complete the training.
Reduces cognitive load
Have you heard of cognitive load? It is the capacity of your short-term memory to process and retain information. Your short-term or working memory can only retain a little information if you overload it with too much work and pressure. A better completion rate is certainly one of your objectives, but only completing the course won’t help. You want your employees to remember and apply what they learned while working. The flexibility that synchronous eLearning offer reduces your employee’s stress, allowing them to grasp new information better.
Since both the instructor and the employees are present in the session at the same time, they can exchange feedback. The instructor can get feedback from employees regarding their teaching style and pace. This allows the instructor to understand the employees’ learning behaviors and requirements. Similarly, the employees can also receive feedback from the instructor regarding their performance in training.
Feedbacks are also possible with the asynchronous method, but immediate feedback is always better. You can resolve any doubts your employees may have then and there.
Promotes interaction among employees
In the asynchronous model, employees have the freedom to choose when and how much of the training portion they want to complete at a time. This makes it difficult for the learners to initiate conversations with each other.
Good teamwork is necessary for any company; synchronous eLearning is one way to bring all your employees together. The situation changes in the synchronous model as it allows all learners to interact with each other. This makes the whole session interactive and engaging. When your employees interact and know each other better, they become friends, which helps you develop a team that can carry out collaborative projects easily.
Simulations and gamification to increase engagement
If you use a Learning Management System for training, you can use advanced features like simulations and gamification.
Simulations help your employees get an essence of real-life scenarios and get acquainted with them.
Gamification is a feature that makes your training more interesting. If you think this is about adding games to the training course, you are greatly mistaken here. Gamification doesn’t mean including games; it makes the interface appear to be that of a game. It may have leaderboards, music, fun graphics, etc.
It makes your course fun, unlike other training programs that look bland most of the time.
We may not know it, but we all do it- learning from others. In a learning environment where learners and instructors are continuously interacting with each other, all employees get to learn from each other. It isn’t really about technical knowledge but about mannerisms, experiences, and more. A lot of LMSs also have features that support social learning. Social learning doesn’t require a book and notes. It happens on its own. We just need an environment where employees get to interact and learn from each other, and the synchronous learning method gives you that environment.
Synchronous eLearning is a fairly good learning method you can use for your employee training. But it goes without saying that the model has some drawbacks. For example, it does allow your employees to learn from anywhere, but it doesn’t allow them to learn at any time. This is why many organizations are now switching to a blended learning approach that uses synchronous and asynchronous learning methods. It combines the benefits of both methods and is one of our best learning models.