ELearning has evolved quite a bit over the past decade. In the beginning it was confined to a desktop. Since then though, it has become more mobile in nature.
Today we are connected to all kinds of devices. As such, we find ourselves engaged in learning activities, both formal and informal, throughout various points in our day.
In 2012, Google conducted a study titled: The New Multi-Screen World: Understanding Cross-Platform Consumer Behavior. This study highlighted the rapidly increasing use of various devices in our everyday lives to complete tasks (including learning initiatives).
The top-three devices we are connected to on a daily basis include:
- PC/Laptop: 39 minutes spent per action
- Tablet: 30 minutes spent per action
- Smartphone: 17 minutes spent per action
This study found that user behavior is hardly ever isolated to just one device. In fact, we jump between devices quite often. Because of this we have come to expect a smooth transition.
Which highlights an important point. If you’re creating elearning, how easy is it for your learners to access it across multiple platforms?
What I have noticed is that many elearning developers focus primarily on the PC/Laptop performance with mobile learning (smartphones and tablets) as an afterthought.
This is a fundamentally flawed approach.
When elearning is created in this way, it places priority on a specific medium. It makes performance on the other devices “nice-to-have” functionality.
The truth is, studies like the one conducted by Google indicate that cross-platform performance is a “must-have”. We are using all these technologies interchangeably. Don’t limit your learners by taking a reactive approach to content creation.
When you start your online course project, make sure you choose a learning management system that isn’t limited by the device being used.
Also, create your content to be user-friendly across various screen sizes.
Finally, constantly test device performance (not just at the end). You can do this easily using a platform like BrowserStack.