Adult eLearning: Basic Tips And Tricks For Optimized Learning Outcomes

Adult eLearning: Basic Tips And Tricks For Optimized Learning
Summary: In this article, we examine ways to make adult eLearning more efficient, offering a few actionable tips and tricks along the way.

Tips And Tricks For Successful Adult eLearning

Until fairly recently, most training took place face to face, yet in the last years this trend has started to fade, especially after the COVID-19 era. So, here is when adult learning becomes more challenging than ever. Adult learning, in general, is not an easy task, neither for the trainer nor for the trainee. Their attention is often divided into different areas (e.g., work, finances, children, etc.) Also, they may lack time, motivation, and interest. Adult eLearning offers the ability to learn at their own place, especially when it's asynchronous. Education looks more comfortable than ever before. Trainees choose the place, the time, and the date.

However, how can we really help an adult learner to be more focused on the training, without having them take the online training while cooking, replying to emails, and scrolling their newsfeed? How do we win their attention and build motivation?

How To Make Adult eLearning Work

1. Give Stimulus To The Brain

It’s known that the average attention span is between 10–15 minutes.  This means that we should give a constant stimulus to the brain, so we get a longer attention span. Both in synchronous and asynchronous learning, you can ask a question or make a joke when the attention span is shrinking. This will revive the brain as a different kind of information is presented.

2. Keep It Short And Sweet

Who loves long training that takes hours to complete, especially when it is not so interactive? Nobody! Give the necessary and important information regarding the topic you present, in shots/chunks. What’s better than a training divided into small sections, with all the necessary information explained in bullet points, images, diagrams, and short videos?

3. Keep An Eye On Look And Feel

A friendly and well-designed environment is the foundation and the first impression. You win them or lose them. Imagine that you have to work in a messy office, where old and new sticky notes are everywhere, box files have their place on your desk, pens are hard to find, and you can’t find an empty spot to leave your coffee cup! The same goes here…you need a friendly, clear, and structured environment. Carefully selected images, clear diagrams, proper colors, clear fonts, and sizes all play a crucial role in the game of attention winning…or losing.

4. Include Your Trainees

Don’t you feel important when they include you? Include them as a part of the training. Engage and encourage them. Without them, no training will take place. Training is teamwork. Ask them about their relevant knowledge. Let them speak about themselves, share experiences, and embrace storytelling. Give them options. "Would you like to learn this today or this?" Ask questions. "Do you think this is important for you and your company/life?", "How will you react if this scenario takes place in your life tomorrow?"

5. Real-Life Examples And Experiences

Understanding is easier when we have examples, especially when something happens in real life. It’s also easier to remember examples or stories than a 750-word plain text.

6. Press "Replay"

Repetition is the key to success. Every time information is repeated the memory performance in our brains increases, because when we try to recall something, our brains build neural connections. Thus, it’s important to ask people to recall the information. We can achieve this by regularly asking related questions, making mentions regarding the information we want them to recall, giving examples, telling stories, etc.


In conclusion, adult eLearning can be challenging but it is also a compelling game. Always keep the game of education interesting. Try to enclose the information you want to share into small chunks and help people assimilate it through repetition, zestful images, pointed examples, real-life stories, and interaction moves. Make them feel part of the game!