Posted by Rachael Jones on Feb 8, 2018 8:30:00 AM



Have you ever crammed for an exam? Considering one study revealed that upward of 95% of students have admitted to cramming, chances are you have! Many articles have been written about why cramming doesn’t work for long-term learning retention – reasons include stress, lack of sleep, and not giving yourself enough time to truly grasp the information. Some of the reasons cramming doesn’t work in learning retention are also why microlearning can help.

Microlearning is learning in short, easy to digest chunks of material. Topics can be broken down into modules of three to ten minutes, and are made available on-demand and on multiple devices so learners can access the material when it is convenient for them. Research shows that adults learn and retain information better when it is presented in a shorter format.

Here are just a few reasons why this training tool is effective for learning retention and engagement:

  • Avoid information overload. When you try to take in too much information at once, it makes it difficult to retain anything. Think about watering a plant – if you continue to pour on the water, it will soon become saturated and the water will just run off the top. The more effective way is to pour a bit of water and let it absorb, then pour a bit more. Same with learning.
  • Get to the point. Shorter micro modules focus on one topic and the key information related to it. The short format eliminates any extraneous information that can be confusing to learners.
  • Make it meaningful. Trying to memorize theoretical information can be difficult. Telling a story to explain an abstract concept can put it in context and make it more meaningful. Modules can be created with examples, terminology and situations that are specific to your daily job, presenting the theory in a practical way that brings it to life. In many cases, you can use the new information right away, which further facilitates learning retention.
  • Address different learner levels. When cramming for exams, it is natural to focus on the areas that are more difficult or topics in which you need more help. Micro modules are topic specific, making it easier for learners to review only the information they need and skip those they already know to avoid wasting time.
  • Easy access for quick reviews. Retaining information is easier when topics are reinforced over time. With cramming, the information is often forgotten soon after the exam. Microlearning can be used to supplement longer form training – it can be sent to learners in the days and weeks after the course for review. Another benefit of the topic specific learning modules is that learners can refresh their memories on material before an important meeting, for example, or while working on a big project.

To learn more about this training tool and how to implement it as part of your learning and development programs, download the eBook “Microlearning: Bite-sized eLearning”.



If you are interested in developing microlearning as part of your eLearning program, contact the global training experts at TrainingFolks


Topics: corporate training tips, microlearning, learning retention

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