Food For Thought: 10 Old Adages That All eLearning Professionals Should Consider
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10 Old Adages For eLearning Professionals

eLearning, as we know it today, is rooted in tech tools and mobile-friendly resources. Things that were the stuff of dreams for our ID forefathers. However, there are certain sayings and notable quotes that hail from the past, which we should still heed today. Some may have become clichés over the years, but the wisdom behind them will never go out of style. These 10 old adages ring true for modern eLearning professionals.

1. “Doubt Is The Key To Knowledge” (Iranian Proverb)

Some of the most profound online training experiences are grown from a seed of doubt. Online learners question something about themselves or the world around them, and this prompts them to seek out new information and unlock undiscovered knowledge. Which is why you should always encourage your online learners to challenge their assumptions and never settle for the simplest answer.

2. “Mistakes Are Doorways To Discovery” (Anonymous)

Mistakes give learners the power to identify their strengths and weaknesses so that they can continually improve. In online training environments, a seemingly simple mistake can help employees learn new things about themselves and test their mettle. For example, evaluate their performance during an online training simulation to see where they went wrong. Then brush up on their knowledge and skills to rectify the situation.

3. “Presumption First Blinds A Man, Then Sets Him Running” (Benjamin Franklin)

Online learners might presume that they know something, or have mastered a task or skill. As a result, they aren’t willing to actively engage in the eLearning experience because they don’t feel it applies to them. But once they realize that there is always fresh knowledge to explore, they’re more likely to embark on a journey of lifelong learning. For this reason, it’s important to give online learners time to reflect and evaluate their own cognitions, as well as the extent of their knowledge base regarding a specific topic. For example, conduct self-assessments so that they can pinpoint gaps.

4. “When The Pupil Is Ready, The Teacher Will Come” (Chinese Proverb)

Online learners must be open to the learning process and prepared to engage with the eLearning content. Then, and only then, they will be ready to absorb the information that they need to achieve their goals. You can identify their primary sources of motivation and tap into them through your eLearning course design. However, they must still be willing participants in order to emotionally invest and fully commit themselves to the task.

5. “A Man Who Asks Is A Fool For Five Minutes. A Man Who Never Asks Is A Fool For Life” (Chinese Proverb)

Encourage your online learners to ask questions and create a supportive learning culture where they feel comfortable doing so. Posing a question might make them feel inadequate or uneasy for a short time, but the alternative is leading a life of ignorance. Their pride gets the better of them and prevents them from realizing their true potential.

6. “The Man Who Is Too Old To Learn Was Probably Always Too Old To Learn” (Henry S. Haskins)

This saying aptly applies to multigenerational audiences. Namely, mature learners who question whether they are tech-savvy enough to partake in eLearning courses. Encourage older members of your audience to move out of their comfort zone by offering online training tutorials and other support resources. For example, demos that show them how to access the Learning Management System and get the information they need.

7. “If Learning Is An Act Of Exploration, Then Technology Equips The Explorer For The Journey Of A Lifetime” (Anonymous)

All eLearning professionals should commit this adage to memory. It reflects the true essence of how technology facilitates the learning process. Learning technologies give online learners the power to indulge every curiosity and explore the far reaches of their understanding. It equips them with all the tools they need to become avid lifelong learners.

8. “Never Let Formal Education Get In The Way Of Your Learning” (Mark Twain)

Some of the most profound learning experiences occur in social or informal settings. Formal, structured online training sessions are part of the puzzle, but they aren’t the only tool at your disposal. As a matter of fact, impromptu training can improve comprehension and facilitate peer-based feedback in eLearning.

9. “The Greatest Enemy Of Learning Is Not Ignorance; It Is The Illusion Of Knowledge” (Stephen Hawking)

Certain online learners who log into your eLearning course are positive that they know everything you’re about to tell them. They’ve learned it all before and they’ve already decided that they will go through the motions just to earn that mandatory certification. However, this hinders personal growth and prevents them from learning new ideas and concepts. Thus, you must encourage online learners to reflect on their current knowledge base and see things from different perspectives. That’s when the real knowledge assimilation begins, and their ego takes a back seat.

10. “A Little Learning Is A Dangerous Thing” (Alexander Pope)

It can be detrimental to only explore a fraction of the information regarding a certain topic or theory. When this occurs, online learners see things from a single point of view or merely acquire one side of the story instead of being able to study the various facets of the subject matter. For example, the online training module only highlights the basic steps involved in a task. However, it fails to mention which skills are necessary or provide links to supplemental online training resources, such as demo videos or images that allow online learners to observe and replicate the task in the real world.

These quotes may be old, but they certainly aren’t outdated. In fact, they can help eLearning professionals better understand learning behaviors and provide more effective eLearning content. Are there any old adages that you keep in mind when creating eLearning courses?

Do you need a spark of inspiration to get through a difficult eLearning project? Are you looking for a motivational boost? Read the article 11 Inspirational Quotes That Can Help You Achieve eLearning Success to explore 11 so powerful quotes that can help you achieve eLearning success.

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