When putting what you learned into practice on the job, how often do you find yourself wondering, “Wait, how do I do this again?” after finishing a training exercise? When attendance drops and productivity decreases, the time invested in the training seems pointless.
In order to create learning experiences that actually produce results – that is, shifts in behavior and enhanced performance on the job – it is helpful to keep a list of best practices in instructional design handy. Here is a quick rundown:
The first time someone tries something is never the time they succeed. Possessing an intellectual grasp of theoretical frameworks and specialized terminologies does not necessarily translate into practical competence.
If this were the case, medical students and graduates could immediately begin practicing medicine without first completing an internship. That makes sense; why wouldn’t they?
They should be ready for the real world after four years of rigorous medical school, right?
Whether or not they feel prepared to lead an open heart surgery is a question you can ask any first-year surgical resident. Consider whether you’d feel comfortable with an open heart surgery being led by a first-year surgical resident.
True, even for medical professionals, regular practice is essential for mastery. Because of the critical nature of clinical experience, residents are required to meet quotas in order to earn their medical licenses.
In order to learn in a social setting, it is necessary to exchange knowledge. Sharing knowledge helps people remember it better because it’s repeated.
Whether formal or informal, learning networks, small-group activities, and on-the-job mentoring give students a chance to ask questions and get answers from their peers, all while creating memorable learning experiences.
When you step back and look at learning as a whole, it can be a lot to take in. Microlearning is a teaching strategy that divides large chunks of material into smaller ones so that students can focus on mastering a single topic before moving on. The whole is built up from smaller parts over time.
Organize your course so that students can finish it in manageable chunks.
We may try, but the human brain is simply not capable of performing multiple tasks at once. Those who think they can multitask are really just rapidly switching between two activities.
Every time this happens, your brain takes a hit, and you may experience some cognitive switching costs. When the brain has to reboot, it loses time and forgets things. Learners can concentrate better if you design the lesson with that in mind.
Facilitate education In terms of education, sight is unrivaled. This doesn’t mean you should just put everything on a PowerPoint.
This means that you should make use of visual aids like videos, posters, flow charts, flashcards, and the like to maintain your student’s attention.
Make sure your students have access to highlighters, pens, and pencils if you’re using this strategy in the classroom so they can color code or manually recreate visuals they’ve seen.
You probably remember from your own school days that cramming doesn’t lead to lasting success. Distribute your study time to maximize long-term memory retention.
Taking a short break in the middle of a task can help students retain more of what they’ve learned, according to research.
If you want to learn something, it’s better to spend 20 minutes on it every day than to spend two hours on it once a week. Try not to just give your entire brain to the audience.
Using in-class formative assessments frequently is a great way to monitor your own effectiveness as a teacher. Student feedback, like reflective writing, can help you improve as a teacher.
You can use a wide variety of question types, including surveys, questionnaires, exit tickets, open-ended inquiries, and game-based quizzes, to create formative assessment tasks for your students. Ask the following two questions at the end of class:
What did you take away from this experience?
Specifically, what did you find challenging to comprehend?
Use gamification resources to make your own gamified quizzes that you can administer live to your entire class or distribute as homework for students to complete at their own pace.
In the Reports tab of each of these programs, you can examine comprehensive data on each student’s development and achievement. On some of these sites, you can even email or text parent-teacher conference summaries to them.
The central tenet of student-centered pedagogy is the encouragement of student’s voice or the act of allowing students the opportunity (along with the corresponding duty) to share their thoughts on and contribute to the classroom and course-wide decisions that affect their education.
When students feel heard and have agency over their education, they flourish.
In exchange for the opportunity to hear their opinions, students must accept responsibility for their education.
You can give students a stronger voice by having them use one of the many online tools and platforms available.
Certificate programs give students an additional tool for achieving academic success. In contrast to cumulative grade point averages and semester marks, certifications are independent indicators of achievement that students can keep regardless of their overall academic performance.
Certifications give students a sense of accomplishment that is similar to that of earning college credit. This clearly defined success can increase self-esteem, dedication, and morale.