Northpass 101: How Shorter Courses Increase Learner Engagement

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Nikki Engel ·

May 03, 2021

You may or may not have heard the term micro-learning before. It’s not a new term, but also not one that comes up very often in day-to-day conversion.

Micro-learning is an approach to training that utilizes short, “bite-sized” learning segments designed to help people achieve a highly specific goal. This style of training is preferred by on-the-go learners who don’t have time to sit down and invest in prolonged, online courses.

When done right, these mini-lessons can be even more effective than their long-winded counterparts. Research has shown that micro-learning can lead to increased knowledge retention, superior learner engagement and higher learner satisfaction. More on that in a bit.

The key to a high-performing, micro-learning strategy is to offset the reduced length of lessons with increased frequency and interaction. 

To maintain momentum, a good micro-learning program encourages learners to engage with more interactive material than what would be found across a traditional course. Enabling people to learn in bite-sized chunks several times a week also helps with knowledge retention.

Micro-learning is More Effective Than Traditional Learning. 

Micro-learning is an extremely effective way for learners to succeed in their day-to-day job responsibilities without disrupting their productivity. It has even proven to be a more cost-effective training method.

Here’s why:

    • Provides Flexibility
      Bite-sized learning content is easily and readily accessible. This means that people can consume it at their own pace, wherever they are. More importantly, users can access it when they are “ready.”
    • Creates Engagement
      Shorter clips of content are easier to digest and don’t disrupt work as much as long-form content does. Studies have indicated that nearly 60% of survey respondents indicated that they would use their company’s learning tools more if the courses were shorter.
    • Increases Retention
      Because micro-learning is more focused and specific in nature, learners don’t have to clutter their memories with irrelevant information.
    • Improves Comprehension
      Minimal effort is required to maximize the understanding of the material. Learners have to digest only the necessary information required to achieve a specific goal.
    • Generates Efficiency
      Micro-learning lessons are modular in nature, making them easier and less time-consuming to roll out. Learning developers can reduce course development costs by 50% and increase the speed of development by 300%.

The world is changing and yesterday’s training approaches and tactics are no longer the best way of engaging with today’s professionals. Micro-learning allows customers to succeed with their purchases, people to excel in their work and partners to better represent your brand.  

How to Get Started Today.

Start small. Below are some of my tips to get you started with micro-learning. Give it a shot, and send me a note! I’d love to hear how it’s working for you! 

    1. Start out by taking a 1 hour-long online lesson and dividing it up into smaller mini-lessons.
    2. Use questions to strengthen the memory of your learnings – this forces the brain to recall information.
    3. Encourage learners to complete the lessons within a given time period to build on the momentum of each mini course.

Stay Tuned for More Northpass 101. 

As always, we will be back with more tips and tricks soon, but in the meantime, shoot us an email if there’s a specific topic you’d like to learn more about.


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About the Author
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Nikki Engel

Nikki Engel leads Northpass’ product marketing and sales enablement efforts. She’s passionate about helping customers see the true value of every Northpass feature. When Nikki isn’t spearheading product launches, she can be found chasing after her two adorable kids (seriously, ask her to show you some pictures) or renovating her new fixer-upper; watch out HGTV, here she comes.

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