For a long time, online course content followed a predictable pattern.
This usually involved the learner clicking “next” (or “Marking Complete”) until they reached the end of the course, and then they would attempt to guess on a quiz, knowing full-well that they could retake it if needed.
In other words, people started to game the system.
While there are some contexts where this is less harmful, there are other areas where this kind of online course interaction is detrimental.
For instance, in the education space, learning cannot really occur if the student is just trying to skip the content in an effort to get it over with.
In the event that a consultant or coach is selling elearning, this characteristic of online courses often results in more refund requests. People will purchase a course, take what the need, then request their money back.
To help combat this obvious drawback to elearning, learning management systems and online course creation tools have started to implement robust drip-feeding mechanisms.
Drip-feeding is just a fancy name for “scheduling” of course content, and it allows you to deliver your lessons in intervals or on specific dates.
As you can imagine, this has some pretty great benefits. First, if you happen to be selling an online course, then sequentially revealing content to a learner over time is a great way to help increase the chances that they actually review it.
For a classroom setting, drip-feeding makes it possible to align live classroom instruction with online course components in a structured manner. It prevents students from jumping too far ahead.
If you are selling a course, drip-feeding prevents someone from quickly downloading all of the content then requesting their money back.
Drip-feeding isn’t right for all situations. For example, if you have a one-hour compliance course, then it doesn’t make much sense to drip-feed the lessons.
However, if you have a course that is longer in duration, then you should certainly investigate if drip-feeding would be a good option for you and your learners.