December 6th, 2013 Instructional Design

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Organizations today are administering in house training across a large number of disciplines.

Be it for compliance, sales, leadership, human resources, finance, or any other corporate division, companies are spending a lot of time and money ensuring their employees are well prepared for their jobs.

However, despite these training initiatives, there are still inherent challenges. In many cases, the training delivered is still not being applied in the workplace, likely because employees don’t retain enough of what they learn. Additionally, the results and ROI of training are difficult to establish (a common complaint when it comes to training events).

To combat these challenges, training developers are turning to various instructional design methods for course delivery. One that has become increasingly popular is Interval Reinforcement.

What is Interval Reinforcement

Internal Reinforcement is the process of taking some form of content, and then repeating the delivery of it to employees over a specified number of times, and length of time, until that content is reinforced.

The idea is to take the learning content and deliver it in ongoing, small training sessions instead of all at once at one point in time. Doing so allows the learner to effectively digest the content and apply it to their job.

What are the Benefits?

The goal of Interval Reinforcement is to increase the amount of knowledge retained, which in turn can decrease the cost of training. If employees are exposed to the training content at various points in time after the initial training event occurs, the gaps in knowledge will be filled. This helps to maximize the initial investment of the training.

The reduced need for retraining employees also leads to increased employee productivity as they will be spending their time doing what their employers hired them to do rather than attending training events.

In order for an Interval Reinforcement program to work effectively, the following attributes are ideal:

  • Easy for employees
  • Personalized to the learner
  • Engaging and motivating content (gamification perhaps)
  • Accessible (think elearning)
  • Measurable
  • Adaptable in circumstances of change

All of these characteristics essentially describe the same thing: the learning content should not get in the way, but instead support (and enhance) employee performance.

If you are creating a learning program for your organization, consider Interval Reinforcement as a potential strategy for delivering the content. Doing so will make learning part of the organizational culture rather than an one-shot deal, which is far more beneficial for your company.

References:

kirkpatrickpartners.com
roiinstitute.net
axonify.com

 

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About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter

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