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5 Learning Management System content types you should use and why


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Did you know you can actively foster learner engagement through your choice of Learning Management System (LMS) content types? In fact, your LMS content types can be pivotal to enabling learner success by directly tapping into the core of your learners' motivations. When selecting your LMS content types, consider the three ways learners become engaged in learning:

  1. Behavioural: Actual and active participation in and commitment to learning.
  2. Emotional: Feelings about – and connections with – teachers/facilitators, peers, learning, and the learning environment.
  3. Cognitive: The mental effort and motivation that needs to be invested in learning.

5 Learning Management System content types to boost learner engagement

1. Gamify your LMS content with a “race against time” quiz

If participation in your courses is dropping, consider including a “Race against time” quiz, where a learner has to answer as many questions as possible within a short time. For instance, 20 quick-fire questions in five minutes. By incorporating energy-boosting content into your instructional design, you can maintain your learners' engagement. Plus, the gamified learning “race” provides an adrenaline rush and a dopamine hit, producing a happy feeling of success. The “feel good” effect can positively influence how your learners feel about their learning.

2. Provide a follow-up forum to support a webinar

When you consider your learners’ differing needs, they feel valued, connected and appreciated, which leads to better engagement with their learning.

If your learners weren’t able to attend a webinar because their timezone made it impractical, they might feel excluded from the connections and conversations that arose in the live session. So, to give all learners the opportunity to participate and feel connected, provide a recording of the webinar along with a post-webinar forum. Use this post-webinar forum as a platform where learners can interact with the main speaker(s), whether in real-time or asynchronously. Additionally, you can then decide whether you will keep the forum open for further discussion, or archive forum posts and keep it as an accompanying resource.

3. Use H5P to create interactive videos

H5P interactive videos are a great alternative to the standard ‘view video’ completion criterion – they require learners to actively engage with the content, which helps with knowledge comprehension and application. If your learners think the videos are too long, or they seem irrelevant, use H5P to add short interactive tasks to increase interest and engagement. For example, you can require learners to:

  • pause and reflect on video content
  • answer quiz questions
  • fill in the blanks
  • place markers onto an image.

Incorporating these interactive elements can help your learners make connections between their own experiences and the learning content.

You can also use H5P interactive video to re-purpose existing content such as webinar recordings. If learners were unable to attend a live webinar session, provide a recorded video of the webinar using H5P interactive video. When learners feel included, they are more inclined to take ownership of their learning and complete achievable tasks. And any learner can use the interactive video for recap and consolidation.

4. Use “Adaptive mode (no penalties)” in quizzes

Your learners may put pressure on themselves to perform well in their first attempt at a quiz. To reassure learners about their progress, you can use the quiz setting “Adaptive mode (no penalties)” in your quiz, which enables learners to make multiple attempts at each question. This setting can be configured in Moodle under “Question behaviour” on the “Settings” page when creating or editing a quiz. (Also, if you choose the “Right answer” setting in “Review options”, learners can see the correct answer for each question.) “Adaptive mode (no penalties)” can be used to turn a quiz from a traditional summative assessment into a teaching tool, a formative assessment, or a practice test. Learners can relax and make mistakes without feeling that they are being tracked. Plus, they’ll be more likely to try new things and be curious, and experience less test-anxiety.

5. Award Badges to recognise and reward learning

Use badges to encourage your learners to accumulate and showcase evidence of learning. Badges stay with the learner for the badge’s lifespan and can be used to display evidence of learning on external sites such as LinkedIn. One example of using badges is to recognise and capture continuing professional development (CPD) that occurred outside of your Learning Management System. To do this, a manager or teacher can assess each item of CPD and allocate points per item. After accumulating a set number of CPD points, the learner is awarded a badge. For example, they receive a badge for every 5 points and then another after completing all twenty annual CPD points. By using badges to recognise CPD, the learner feels that their experience is valued. If you use Moodle, you can download a template for collecting CPD points and awarding associated badges.

Bonus tip - prevent “SCORM rot”

SCORM doesn’t auto-save when it is open, so learners often get frustrated if their progress is not saved before they close the SCORM. When learners don’t know that their completion hasn’t been saved, they become increasingly frustrated, especially if their allocated number of attempts is exhausted.

Instead of SCORM, try other core content types such as H5P or Quiz, which have frequent "behind-the scenes" auto-saving. With auto-saving activities, learners are able to complete modules successfully, meaning they are likely to continue learning and engaging with your LMS with minimal frustration.To learn more about SCORM rot, check out our previous blog post.

Learning Management System content development

By including these 5 LMS content types as part of your instructional design you can increase learner engagement. Engaged learners commit the time and mental effort needed to be active participants because they feel that their experiences are valued and that their input matters. Why not have a go yourself at trying these content types to engage your learners?

If you don’t have the in-house expertise to create engaging content types, partner with trusted eLearning experts. At Catalyst, our eLearning consultants develop rapid content to support learners' success and enable your learning strategy. Contact us to learn more about our content development options.