The modern world demands its inhabitants to develop and learn quickly. Formal learning during the companies’ training can no longer be useful. The challenge the executives and employees face requires them to design and gain knowledge in the limited time frames. In order to succeed, individuals are pushed to explore new methods of training. The micro-learning model meets the demand – with the concrete and concise pieces of information necessary for the specific purpose, it offers the future employees an opportunity to master the knowledge quickly. In this paper, the essence of micro-learning, its cognitive effect, and the differences in training methods will be considered.
The design of a new training program for a new role or performance requires an in-depth understanding of the phases to consider beforehand. To prepare such a course, a company’s executive may think over the following stages: preparation, equipment, application, reactivation, and support. Each of them has their details to be implemented appropriately. The preparation phase includes such elements as an introduction, alignment, and inspiration to deliver the “receive mode” (“Micro-learning” 00:01:00-00:01:11).
At the equipment phase, the designing team has to come up with the course itself and campaign to provide the knowledge transfer. Then, the application implies the usage of the obtained knowledge in their workplace. It includes the practical factors, checklist, and active coaching to be considered carefully. Reactivation regards the transformation of the items learned into the knowledge. At this phase, the reflection, reinforcement, and repetition come in front. Finally, the support phase requires the designing team the in-depth consideration of the methods the future employees will be provided during their working process.
The micro-learning method was developed to fit into this scheme. The micro-content mode involves communication in the preparation phase – the continuous update on the trainees’ learning status. The equipment and reactivation stages engage the direct learning – digital tools and specific programs provide the learning here. The training may begin, for example, with an introductory movie for the trainees to start.
At the reactivate phase, a future employee may be presented a video with a particular scenario, and then be asked to go out to a collaborative session and discuss how they would handle the situation. Apart from the direct learning elements, these phases also include active learning, which requires its participants to rate, post, make quizzes or surveys, do research, or interview an expert in the field (“Micro-learning” 00:03:00-00:03:16). The micro-learning model also provides performance support while working. For instance, if the applicant needs some information for an oncologist’s visit, the support team will provide them with the necessary information.
Micro-learning is, therefore, a mode that enhances the gaining knowledge of a particular area for the specific position. This method includes mainly the digital way of studying and may be used when the time for acquiring knowledge is limited. In this case, knowledge acquisition is held with a small piece of information explicitly needed for the position (Morgan, 2019). The micro-learning process may be completed with such formats as explainer videos, interactive videos, scenario-based simulations, whiteboard animations, or eBooks (“Tips and Examples for using microlearning” 00:02:30-00:02:50). The micro-learning may be used to meet a particular intended outcome, support Online training, or reinforce formal training.
It offers a perfect approach for activating one’s cognitive skills. The learning system includes the cognitive learning system, behavioral learning system, and the emotional one (Maddox, 2018). If the micro-learning model is combined with targeted retraining, it becomes a tool that makes the transition from short-term memory to long-term one faster. More than that, it reduces the brain’s forgetting tendencies (Maddox, 2018). Thus, one’s cognitive skills may be boosted significantly if the method is used adequately.
The micro-learning, though, differs from traditional formal learning in several ways. The formal model implies a structured process of knowledge acquisition in a classroom setting, which is entirely different from the micro-learning. The elements of the latter mode make it possible for the learner to complete the tasks given or do the research at any suitable place. The micro-training implies such activities as personalization, engagement, active learning, problem-solving, interaction with the other participants, or research (“Alex Khurgin” 00:01:40-00:03:07). Formal learning, in turn, is basically focused on the segments of information directed solely at one learner and supposed to be assimilated independently.
With the world requiring faster knowledge acquisition and skill learning, the employees are forced to resort to the new methods of learning. Formal one may no longer be effective enough to offer fast skill mastering. Micro-learning mode, in turn, offers another approach to the information acquisition – concise and concrete segments are explicitly aimed at the particular working area. This model includes using digital tools and programs, eBooks, discussions and collaborative work, doing surveys, or doing researches. Combining the model with targeted retraining provides a tool boosting cognitive abilities and reducing the brain’s tendency to forget. With such a useful technique, the training process can be facilitated quickly. More than that, being an effective learning model, it may shortly become the future of workplace training.
EIDesign. (2017). Tips and examples for using microlearning to promote Informal learning at the workplace [Video]. YouTube. Web.
GPStrategiesCorp. (2014). Micro-learning: Enabling employees one bite at a time [Video]. YouTube. Web.
Maddox, T. (2018). Microlearning and the brain. Chief Learning Officer. Web.
Morgan, A. (2019). Microlearning made simple: A step-by-step guide. GoAnimate. Web.
The Learning Guild. (2014). Alex Khurgin from Grovo on learner-first microlearning. YouTube. Web.