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Insights

How to Leverage Video to Increase Learner Engagement

Tuesday, October 22, 2019
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Leveraging video in your online learning programs is about more than just lights, camera, action. You need to consider the type of experience you’re trying to deliver and how a video module will enhance it. If your goal is to make a piece of content more interesting and increase member engagement, video learning can do just that.

Understanding the Learner

It’s well known that everyone learns differently. Some people are visual learners who prefer images to help them understand concepts. Auditory learners retain spoken information best and often favor traditional lectures and discussion settings. Readers do exactly as the name suggests—they read and write to lock in knowledge. Kinesthetic learners absorb information by doing and practicing. The exciting thing is that, although we often align ourselves with one or two of these types, we learn best when all of them come together.

If you think about the best video modules or animations you’ve seen, you’ll probably notice that they include three, if not four, of those learning mechanisms. For this reason, 86 percent of viewers turn to YouTube to learn new things and more than 70 percent use it to solve a job, study, or hobby-related problem. According to a Think With Google study, YouTube makes people feel smarter, more inspired, and prepared for a task, particularly because a well-done video will cater to the visual, auditory, reader, and kinesthetic learner.

Let’s take a closer look at the number one reason people turn to video platforms to fix something in their home or car. A good tutorial video will include an image of what they’re working on (visual), dialogue or narration about the steps that need to be taken (auditory), captioning or labeling of the various elements (reader), and encouragement to pause the video and complete each action along with the video (kinesthetic).

The question then becomes, how do you incorporate video into your association’s learning experience?

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Building the Content

First, you need to consider which portion (or portions) of the curriculum can be delivered via video. Some material will be better served as PDFs or gamified learning experiences while other material is perfectly suited for the medium. Some examples are:

  • online instructor-led modules
  • tutorials
  • role plays
  • testimonials
  • animations.

The real magic, however, happens when you leverage video for two-way communication between the individual delivering the content and the learner. This could be through more traditional mediums such as webinars or presentations that incorporate discussion forums but could also include modern tools that leverage the power of video to assess specific skill sets for your learners.

The idea here is to have video become an extension and enhancement of the larger learning program, allowing you to build rapport, familiarity, affinity, and trust in a short period of time.

Delivering the Program

Providing a video experience should be an easy exercise with a modern learning platform. It’s simply a matter of uploading the video where it belongs in the learner journey and tracking adoption and engagement.

Here are three tips you can consider when offering video modules:

  • Give them a reason to come back for more. Video can be so effective because new content can be delivered on a regular basis. Involving a variety of presenters who can explore a range of topics will help you frequently offer fresh, relevant video content for your members and learners.
  • Make video learning a two-way street. Leveraging video assessments to measure and enhance learners’ skill sets can provide valuable insights into the strength of your learning program and give learners opportunities to iterate and improve as time passes.
  • Ensure it’s a great experience for everyone. Despite the rate of technological advancement, bandwidth limitations are still a common problem when it comes to delivering video learning.
About the Author

Andra Popescu is a senior advisory consultant for D2L with deep expertise in change management and leadership development practices. She’s spent over seven years providing strategic, innovative, research-driven solutions for corporate executives in a variety of industries. Andra holds an Honors Bachelor of Sciences degree from McMaster University and an MBA with a focus in strategy and brand management from Ryerson University. In her spare time, she’s a Kundalini Yoga teacher, obstacle course racer, an avid runner, book lover, and travel addict.

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