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Elearning, Learning and development, Learning technology

You have probably heard about social learning, right? But have you been using social learning to enhance your online learning programs?

In this article I am sharing how you can improve your online learning programs and training thanks to social learning and ensure your learning initiatives are memorable and impactful.

Social learning = 20%

The 70-20-10 model highlights that nearly 20% of our learning happens from working in collaboration with others (through interactions, feedback, observation and working directly with our co-workers). The model states that learning should come from a variety of sources using a 70-20-10 ratio:– 70% from challenging assignments: Experiential learning – 20% from developmental relationships: Social learning – 10% from coursework and training: Formal training

70 20 10
70 20 10

Social Learning theory from Bandura highlights the value of social learning when describing ‘Man’s capacity to learn by observation enables him to acquire large, integrated units of behaviour without gradual (…) and tedious trial and error’. Learning with others can therefore be a shortcut to quicker proficiency and knowledge.

Despite the social component being one of the most recognised sources of learning, we still struggle to include it in training programs, especially when delivering training in eLearning/ online learning format.

How can you embrace social learning in your online learning programs:

– Create forums and discussion groups in your online learning

– Include assignments that include receiving feedback from peers, manager or trainer

– Add activities that foster consultation of others (seeking advice, asking opinions, etc)

– Request people to pair and submit assignments together

– Create online mentoring and coaching

– Run Learn and Lunch sessions via webinars

– Create internal teams/networks (virtual or in-person) around topics of interest

– Relate content of training to professional blogs and wikis

– Facilitate group discussions using web-conferencing

– Use Pinterest to find new information via pictures

– Include discussion and debate activities as part of curriculum

– Encourage learners to create and share own content

– Use game-based learning (create team missions where they earn points and badges)

– Use simulations and interactive videos with scoring of reactions to emergency situations (making it a healthy competition for your staff

– Use Video and video channels (such as youtube) for employee learning

– Use Virtual reality learning (VR) to prepare staff for compliance: training them as a group

– Live sessions with trainers and team members
– Engage learners with questionnaires and surveys

And there you go! Here are some ideas of activities to include in your online/ eLearning training programs. The 70/20/10 model brings out that the learning process clearly benefits when there is a good mix of sources of learning. Usually we tend to focus more on the formal part of learning, yet this only accounts for 10% of the learning. We need to focus more attention on the other sources of learning, such as the 20% part which regards social learning. We hope you enjoyed this blog post on how to use social learning to enhance your online learning programs. Now we want to hear from you: which are you using already? And which are you looking to include next? 

Let us know by leaving a quick comment.


Learning technology

From HR Inspiration London

HR Inspiration was 2 weeks ago in London and we had such a nice experience and exchanges with fellow participants that we wanted to share it with you. The quality of the interactions made it a really worthwhile experience and we are very appreciative to all those who participated in contributed into such an enriching discussion.

Here are some ideas and insights from HR Inspiration London:

Fit for the future: key skills your workforce needs

With many processes being automated and the progressing digitalisation of HR, soft skills are the core skills your workforce will need to stay fit for the future. Soft skills become the differentiating factor.

89% of HR professionals, including recruiters, say it is difficult to find people with optimal soft skills. And futurologist Jacob Morga n mentions a transition between hard to soft skills.

With the increase in technology use, such as phones, tablets and computers, many people struggle to acquire basic communication skills that are necessary to work with others and to be successful in their work. In comparison to other generations, younger generations have been more used to technology and although this brings as an advantage that they are much more tech-savvy, they have been less exposed to social interactions.

Millennials find learning an increasingly important component to their work, especially when compared with non-millennials. And it’s important to notice that Millennials will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025 (Deloitte).

The most important key skills your workforce should have, according to reports ( LinkedIn Report and futurologists) are:

Leadership: 65%

Communication: 64%

Collaboration: 55%

These are topics that are closely tied together: an effective communication is needed so that an active collaboration between people, teams and departments can happen. True leadership takes place when leaders can articulate (communicate) their vision and strategy, and involve others (collaboration) in accomplishing it.

These are all about building a connection, about building relationships. These skills can be trained, and are especially valuable in a working context. To train these skills the ideal is have a face to face format, and an active, practice-oriented methodology.

Examples of the most needed, crucial soft skills training is:

Leadership: Strategic thinking, Leading without formal authority, Leading through change.

Communication: Communicating with confidence, Influencing others, Giving & Receiving feedback

Collaboration: building relationships, effective listening, change management

There is currently a war on talent, with many companies actively recruiting staff from its competitors. Retention is a key issue for most organisations, and that is very much connected with the fast-pace changing world and workplace. Providing learning opportunities and soft skills to its staff becomes vital to companies. 94% of staff say they would stay longer in the company if the company invested more in their training and career development.


Learning in the digital age: or getting digital

HR is getting hands on with tech, and some organisations are doing this better and are at more advanced stages than others – companies are in very different stages of digitalisation. Tech use is rising and will continue to influence the design and use of learning.

Most people check content (websites, email, training) on their phones, and it is now the preferred way to access content online.  Training will need to adapt to this reality and to become more and more digital.

During the HR Inspiration London there was quite a lot of discussion around how automation and digitalisation are changing the workplace, as well as on the perceived impact of this. Some participants mentioned people fear losing their jobs and be replaced by automated processes. One thing that everyone agreed was that automation has its limits. The benefits are that it frees time for other tasks that are more strategic and need human attention.

In overall, Tech is an enabler. It’s complimentary to human action but cannot replace it entirely. One example that was brought up referred to HR systems. HR systems can nowadays anticipate when a staff member is to leave a company, signal it to HR and recommend candidates for the replacement, candidates that are already on a succession list. Despite the fact that a technological system can predict a departure, its human action that can prevent it. Therefore, the future of HR includes both Tech and Human components, all equally important.

Some of the trends highlighted during the discussions will have a direct influence in learning and in how HR positions itself in organisations:

Learning strategy aligned with business strategy – training and development will be more and more connected with the organisational goals. Operations and HR will be working together and influencing each other mutually. Operations do not run without people, and people cannot achieve operational goals without an adequate training strategy.

Measuring training will become crucial and take place at a deeper level – As there will be a stronger connection with organisational objectives, companies will seek proof of applicability of learning. Decisions will be further based on expected return on investment, as well impact of training on strategic objectives.

Personalised learning experiences – Training is to become more individualised and personalised with the use of chatbots and AI (Machine learning). Learners will receive content based on their searches automatically (‘saw you were looking for this – just found you a new article on it’), with training content being updated much more frequently. With the advance of AI, training experiences will start including human-like conversations and engagements, as well as smarter on-screen interactions.

Constant challenges require constant flow of info/learning – HR will seek immediacy in answering to their learners needs. This will include using eLearning and micro-learning. Organisations who cannot keep up and offer this to their staff will fall behind. HR has a huge responsibility in this, in ensuring staff is equipped with the right skills at the right moment.

Advancing learning with technology – AR, VR and mixed reality are to start progressing within companies. They present huge benefits such as better retention, applicability and impact because they take place in an immersive environment and focus on learning experiences.

Traditional approaches to learning will (gradually) disappear – companies focus on thinking differently, on bringing innovation into play: it is only natural that this happens with traditional approaches as well. Companies will invest (even) more in blended learning, using gamification and real case scenarios. A one-size-fits-all training approach does not bring enough value compared to the innovation companies expect.

And well, this sums up our HR Inspiration London discussions and the insights that came from it. We are looking forward to more HR Inspirations editions and to meeting many more inspiring people!


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Chameleon, Elearning, Learning technology

Virtual reality (VR) has become a buzzword on its own, more and more present. But what do we know concretely about it? Nowadays, virtual reality is a trend pushing many people to be actively interested in it. Many consider it a revolutionary trend that will shape the world of tomorrow.  

In this article we will show you some possible applications of VR in learning, and you will see that there are many more applications than just for video games.

Video games were one of the initial uses of VR, and VR headset marketing was really geared towards a gaming environment in its infancy. And it’s true that when used in a gaming environment, VR lets you immerse yourself in a virtual world with some pretty awesome effects. It will allow you to live experiences that only you can imagine. VR started then to be used as a tool for small getaways and trip experiences, because VR allows you to travel to the four corners of the world, without jetlag and without leaving the comfort of your living room. Imagine that you are in Belgium, and 30 seconds later you can be in China and a minute later you visit the USA. What’s not to like about it?

And a more innovative use: in Learning and training

Another use, and much more innovative is to use VR to deliver training within companies. This use is probably the least known (for now) but one of the most effective ones because it allows staff and employees to learn while fully immersed in the subject of your training.

Indeed, the use of VR in a training context, called VR learning, can have several applications.

For onboarding (induction of new staff) – to welcome new elements in your team you need to prepare them well, especially during their first days/months. This includes training them on the different processes and procedures your organization uses, as well as providing them an overview of your corporate culture. This is part of the essential information package, skills and knowledge so your new employee can work fully as quickly as possible.

VR applied to onboarding allows each new employee to quickly acquire the codes and culture of your organization, and thus to slip into his new position as soon as possible.

For initial and continuous learning – because the development of new skills and abilities, as well as the updating of existing knowledge, are needed continuously to keep pace with new technological developments as well as new processes and procedures in each company.

VR learning can be used to train your staff on safety procedures, on the use of machinery or technology, and even to improve some soft skills such as communication and negotiation. VRlearn uses virtual reality as a technology for best practice and learning, a method that replicates real life experiences in a fully interactive way.

To develop your rising stars – in your organization there are talents that you want to develop but who still need a little more experience or practice in a field or another. The best way to make your rising stars progress is to prepare them well. Through VR learning and training, they can train with realistic scenarios that put them to the test, in complete safety, because in the event of an error, there are no consequences for your organization.

Imagine that you want to prepare someone to manage a substantial customer account of 1.2m euro. With VR training your staff can train with a similar account using scenarios in a fully realistic experience, having feedback in real time for each action, without actual real effects on the customer account. A great way to prepare for complex tasks and put all chances for success on your side.

Learning and training in VR can be used among different sectors including medical and paramedical, industrial, hospitality and many others (see other areas of application).

VR has already proven itself in many contexts, and is also doing so in the field of training. Some recent studies even show that VR training is a much more effective method than traditional training, because it allows learning through real situations, with many more concrete and practical elements. So, if you are in charge of developing your staff, you might consider to train your employees in total immersion.

Would you like to experience VR Learning?


Chameleon, Elearning, Learning and development, Learning technology

The effectiveness of hands-on learning isn’t new, and many organisations throughout the world have been making the move towards more participative learning for their staff.

But what if we could challenge the world of learning even more? Shouldn’t we be striving for something that goes beyond participation and moving towards action? After all, Edison did not invent the lightbulb when trying to come up with a better candle…

With learning it’s a bit the same: most of us are improving it. So today I want to challenge you to revolutionise learning, starting with the notion of fully immersive learning, which for me corresponds to a different version of learning.

What is fully immersive?

By fully immersive learning I mean a learning environment, real or virtual, that is very close or similar to reality, with the same conditions and ‘look and feel’, where people work towards a goal, making decisions, taking actions and interacting with the context and experiencing the consequences of those actions.

Fully immersive means creating a setting that recreates an identical situation in which we need to perform to actively learn and practice skills, processes and actions through experimentation.

This keeps people highly engaged in practicing behaviours and using thought processes that we can easily transfer from a simulated environment to real situation.

Among many others, here are the 5 key reasons why you should consider fully immersive learning environments in your learning strategy:

1- It accelerates learning

Fully immersive learning combines the added value of ‘learning and by doing’ and repetitive learning which reinforces memory retention. It combines problem-solving and decision-making in practice and life-like scenarios.

2- Eliminates the gap between theory and practice

By creating fully immersive experiences focusing on the learning by doing your learning becomes practice-oriented and allows you to acquire a depth of experience and know-how you cannot get any other way.

3- Boosts engagement levels

The participant is immediately involved  in their problem solving activity, focusing solely on the task at hand and with no other distraction. All of the senses are being used for learning.

With fully immersive learning experiences are interactive (the participants need to engage with the system) and not passive (just listening or watching what is going on) they are fully engaged in learning.

4- Is as realistic as real life

Fully immersive learning uses real life scenarios which portray different tasks and challenges that a participant will need to complete in the workplace. By being as realistic as real life people can experiment freely, make mistakes and learn from them. And just like real life you need to make decisions, which will lead to consequences, and then learn and adjust from them.

5- Delivers exceptional return on investment

Because people learn from doing and practice, they learn faster and retain what they have learned longer and better in their memory, leading to a higher application of learning onto the workplace as the learning is directly linked to the practice, and hence a better performance. This means that in comparison to traditional learning, fully immersive learning is much more powerful in supporting long-lasting learning and application.

One good example of fully immersive learning is Virtual Reality Learning (check out VRLearn) which can create real life-like situations where we can experiment actions and processes safely.

If you want to explore the possibilities of fully immersive learning or Virtual Reality (VR) for your learning we’d love to hear from you.