How can I select the most appropriate learning approach for my e

Instructional Designer
How can I select the most appropriate learning approach for my e-learning
Collaborative learning - interacting with others to build and share knowledge.
Discussion and chat activities can be adapted to suit the skill levels of your learners and the
complexity of your outcomes. Check out the Advice section in Beth’s E-facilitator area for
sample discussion threads and messages, chat facilitation tips and guides to planning your etivities. These will give you tips for designing successful online collaborative tasks using
communication tools. Visit Geri the IT trainer in E-learning in Practice in the E-tivities area
to hear how she uses discussion and a ‘learning buddy’ system to facilitate collaboration.
Simulated workplace learning - a metaphorical environment or 'world' with ‘real life’ tasks,
resources and roles.
E-learning role plays can engage learners by immersing them in specified roles to pursue a
given agenda. Role plays can provide an extended opportunity to practice solving complex
real life problems. Many learners find the space and time afforded by working anonymously in
an asynchronous e-learning environment a great help in pursuing their role play agendas. You
can devise e-learning role plays for technologies including online, e-mail, text messaging
using mobile phones or video and teleconferencing.
Procedural learning - mastering concepts, processes and procedures, usually when these are
clear and stable.
These can be interactive, self-correcting e-tivities which illustrate procedures and ask
learners to select and order the correct responses. You can checkout examples of procedural
e-learning in the sample designs at the Designing e-learning website.
Game-based learning - learning by doing in a rule-based environment with feedback, often
in the form of a quest or quiz.
Many e-learning platforms such as WebCT, Janison and Blackboard have built in quiz tools
which you can use to develop a range of self-marking activities. There are also plenty of free
or low cost quiz building tools available on the Internet. Check out the E-games section
( of the Flexible Learning
Framework site to try out a range of game formats exploring AQTF Standard 7. It is also
entirely possible to design simple, low tech, highly interactive e-games using e-mail. Read Email Games by Marie Jasinski and Sivasailam Thiagarajan in the E-sources / Documents area
to learn more.
Self-directed learning - self-paced, self-correcting computer-based tutorials (eg IT,
compliance and product training).
These can be complex and multimedia rich learning experiences like Comcare’s Virtual Office
( They can also be simple trainer or
student generated resources. Visit Alan in E-learning in Practice in the E-tivities area to hear
how he creates self-paced vocabulary and grammar resources using PowerPoint® and Photo
Story. Allan’s e-learning resources are examples of Digital Coaching Aids (DCAs). Check out
the DCA Workshop in the E-sources / Documents for more information and examples.
Acknowledgements: Material adapted from E-learning Design. Originally published 2005 by Australian Flexible
Learning Framework - National Communication Project, and Marie Jasinski at Design Planet and reproduced with permission.