Interactive learning methods

Interactive learning methods: a must in e-learning

Interactive or digital learning methods are indispensable for successful e-learning. We show why.

As we’ve clarified elsewhere, good e-learning is about leveraging the benefits of digital media in a targeted way. Anyone who – like us at skillbest – designs e-learning according to this definition and uses the advantages of digital media on the basis of an e-didactic concept, integrates interactivity quite automatically. After all, digital media are made for interactivity. That is why we use the two terms “digital learning methods” and “interactive learning methods” synonymously. Unfortunately, in many cases, too little attention is still paid to the targeted use of digital media in the design of e-learning offerings. Media are often just there to hoist the content onto a screen. But a digitized presentation to click through has little to do with e-learning – and accordingly little to do with interactive learning methods. As you can see, interactive or digital learning methods and e-learning simply belong together for us at skillbest. Before we go into more detail about why this is the case and highlight the benefits of interactive learning methods, let’s look at what exactly is meant by it.

This is what is meant by interactive learning methods

The central word component is of course “interactive”. We are dealing here with a complex, ambiguous concept. Interactivity basically means the (alternating) relationship between two or more variables. In sociology, for example, we speak of interactivity when people interact with each other and align their behavior. Applied to (analog) teaching/learning processes, for example, a discussion or a role play would be interactive learning methods. Since our interest is digital teaching/learning processes, we focus more on the interactivity notion from computer science. This is about the relationship between people and machines. Specifically, it is an input-output relationship. People use gestures such as clicks (input), to which the computer or smartphone or the corresponding software reacts (output). These responses aim to promote knowledge acquisition. Since this all still sounds very technical, let’s back up our explanation with a few examples of interactivity.

A simple example of interactive learning methods in e-learning is a quiz in which learners can select different answer options to test previously learned knowledge. For example, learners click on an answer (input), and the software responds and provides feedback (output) to the learner using text (“True” or “False”) or icons. A somewhat more sophisticated example of interactive learning methods is the use of audio files, as we demonstrate, for example, with our skillvoice e-learning format. Here, in addition to the sense of touch (clicking on correct answers), the sense of hearing is also addressed. As we will explain in more detail below, targeting multiple senses is one of the key benefits of interactive learning methods. E-learning offerings with a high proportion of gamification are also predestined for the use of interactive learning methods. Here, a high degree of interactivity ensures that learners become part of the story and engage more intensively with the learning content presented.

Interactivity: These are the advantages

Now that we’ve hopefully shed some light on the subject, let’s take a look at what interactive learning methods actually do. In the following, we have summarized the key benefits of digital learning methods in e-learning for you:

Diversity of media and methods
The possibilities for interacting with computers or smartphones are diverse and are expanding in parallel with the technical development of the devices. A wide variety of media formats such as images, videos or audio files are available to present learning content and enable interaction. The pool of methods is correspondingly large.

Targeted appeal to multiple senses
As mentioned above, interactions are ideal for addressing the senses of sight, hearing, and touch within an e-learning offering. This helps to ensure that learning content is better internalized.

Accessibility option
Since different media formats are available and several senses can be addressed with the help of interactive learning methods, there is the possibility of designing e-learning offers barrier-free.

Increased willingness to learn
Interactive learning methods have been proven to increase learning readiness and help keep e-learning motivation high. As a result, tasks are solved more efficiently and learning content is better remembered.

After these advantages, it is clear that interactive or digital learning methods are indispensable for successful e-learning. At skillbest, we take advantage of these benefits and integrate interactive learning methods specifically into our e-learning formats. We would be happy to talk to you about how we can also use the advantages of interactive learning methods for you and your learners.