Microlearning: Getting Rid of Waffle

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You probably want to know the key points of this blog straight away. Who can blame you? These days we’re busier than ever.

There’s nothing worse than somebody beating around the bush and straying from the original message.

You know the types: long-winded and wordy chatterboxes who never get to the nitty-gritty.

But don’t worry, we’re not going to waffle on for ages and ages, no siree, not us…

(You see what we’re doing here?!)

The real point is this

Microlearning is the method by which Millennials and Gen Z prefer to learn.

Which is why it’s imperative to get it right. But, creating content in short bursts is not easy. The compressed content still needs all the information of traditional eLearning.

Oversized eLearning is so Last Year!

A lot of eLearning tends to contain way more than is needed. The capacity for unlimited space means that a lot of eLearning simply isn’t edited. The modules often contain slow-moving formats, such as Powerpoint. This is why the content is often overwhelming (not to mention boring!)

Here’s how to cut down on baggy content to ensure your eLearning is slick, streamlined, significant and sassy!

So, what is Microlearning?

Simply put, Microlearning is learning broken into smaller chunks. According to experts, microlearning segments can last between 1-15 minutes. If your content goes over this time-frame, it’s worth considering dividing it into a two-parter.

Microlearning doesn’t just have to be a mini eLearning unit. You can present it in many forms. Whether it’s a blog, a PDF file, an illustration, an animation, a podcast, or even a quiz. Take our awesome Battles, for instance, you can engage your learners with knowledge-reinforcing quizzes that they’ll be able to complete in a matter of minutes!

What are the Benefits of Microlearning?

There are loads of benefits to microlearning are never ending! Here are three highlights:

  • It’s Mobile Friendly

Because of its compact nature, microlearning suits the most popular learning tool: the mobile phone. The speedy essence of microlearning matches the portable nature of the mobile. It’s a tailored experience. With mobile learning, you decide when you want to learn.

64% find accessing workplace learning from a mobile device either essential or very useful. As the average person spends 90 minutes on their phone each day (this means 23 days a year!) microlearning on mobiles will feel like second nature.

  • It’s Faster to Produce

Even though you are conveying the same amount of information, producing microlearning should be a faster process.

  • It’s Less Intimidating

Like a kitten is less intimidating than a lion, consuming micro-units is less intimidating than tackling a whole eLearning course.

Reducing the Waffle in Words

A certain author had some fantastic advice on how to cut away excess dialogue…

Here’s what George Orwell had to say:

  • Never use a long word where a short one will do.
  • If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.

Stick to these and the surplus will soon vanish. Apart from George’s marvelous advice, there are some very helpful questions you can ask yourself to make sure content is absolutely necessary.

  • Does it have new information?
  • Is it necessary?
  • Is it informative?
  • Does it support the learning objective?

If your answer is no, then hit that delete button!

You should apply these questions to every level of content. You should be asking if whole units, slides, paragraphs, sentences or even words are adding to the learning.

Words to Trim

You should ‘Definitely, Certainly, Probably, Actually, Basically, Rather, Somehow, Totally’ delete these words from your training. Again, they don’t add anything.

Reducing the Waffle in Videos

According to data released by Google, ‘How To’ searches on YouTube are growing by 70% year by year, proving that learners love to learn via video. It’s easy on the eye. It’s accessible on mobile and it’s quick.

Videos are the perfect vehicle when creating microlearning. This is because you’re able to pack in:

  • Vlogs
  • Video interviews
  • Tutorial Videos
  • Presentations
  • Demos/Reviews
  • Video Testimonials
  • Live streams

You can use illustrations, animations, audio, stats, infographics, and much more to teach your learning’s too.

There are a few rules to abide by if you want to fit in with a microlearning video template. As mentioned, microlearning can be anything from 3-15 minutes. When it comes to video, we would advise staying around the two minute mark.

According to reports, video engagement is steady up until two minutes.

    • Don’t Over-Edit!

Once you adopt the editing mindset, the process will become second nature (not to mention addictive!) There is such a thing as over-editing, though. You don’t want your videos to be all shiny graphics and no content!

Final Word

Trimming the waffle from your content is not only the difference between micro-content or not, it can be the difference between engaging content and boring content. By following a few simple guidelines, you can trim down your word count and make your content truly micro! Follow George Orwell’s example and ‘always cut a word out if you can.’

Once you have your content as micro as can be, you’ll need a way of sharing it with your people. The Knowledge Arcade is a learning app designed specifically for the mobile generation. It’s the perfect way to distribute gamified content. Want to find out more?

Click here for a demo!

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