With offices spread across multiple geographies and time zones, eLearning is quickly becoming the favourite mode of employee training. eLearning can be mainly categorised into 2 parts, i.e. synchronous and asynchronous. This may seem like a new concept, but we’ve been involved in synchronous and asynchronous learning all our lives.
What is synchronous eLearning?
Synchronous eLearning is the type of training that happens in a classroom-type virtual environment. It is time-dependent and involves live interaction between the learners and the instructor.
For example, you released a new product version and wish to train your sales team about the new features, specifications, changes in pricing, etc. What would be the solution? You can host a webinar in which your sales reps from all over the globe can join. All your sales reps can be trained in one go.
What is asynchronous eLearning?
Asynchronous learning is when you learn on your own. It enables learners to learn at the desired time, at any place, without any active involvement of the teacher. The interactions between the learners and the instructor are independent of time. Some examples are videos, discussion forums, etc.
For example, one of your sales reps could not attend the webinar. He can go through the recorded sessions of the webinar with the help of an asynchronous instructor-led LMS and learn at his own pace, anytime, anywhere.
Benefits of synchronous eLearning
Reduced training costs - Money spent on travel, accommodation, arranging a venue, etc. is saved. By adopting a virtual classroom-type environment, you cut down on unnecessary expenses and do not lose the human aspect of learning. Attendees can interact with each other and the instructor through video conferencing, chats, or audio virtually from their respective geographies.
Real-time doubt clarification - The best advantage of an interactive learning environment is the ability to raise queries and get a prompt resolution. Also, people learn from the mistakes of others and try to avoid them. Virtual classrooms not only imitate physical classes but are a step ahead by offering tools that encourage a collaborative and interactive environment.
Train employees globally - Synchronous eLearning modes like webinars can teach a global audience at one go. Learners can attend the session on any device like laptops, desktops, smartphones, tablets, etc.
Asynchronous eLearning is more popular than synchronous eLearning mainly because it is more learner-centric. Let us look at the benefits it offers.
Inherently scalable - One of the reasons for asynchronous eLearning to be so popular is that you need to create the content only once and it can reach as many people you want. There are no location challenges, time-zone challenges, or device restrictions.
Highly flexible - Asynchronous eLearning can be flexible according to the learner’s demand. The learner can complete the session at any time, any place, from any device. The popularity of asynchronous learning methods cannot be ignored. If it weren’t what people wanted, YouTube wouldn’t have reached where it is today.
Relearning - Asynchronous methods can be used to relearn something that was explained a couple of years ago. These methods are great to help learners recall the information that was delivered earlier.
Complete control to the learner - Asynchronous eLearning is also referred to as learner-centric eLearning as it offers full control to the learner. Leaners can learn at their own pace, pause the session in between, etc. It is the best way for working adults to gain additional knowledge on topics not related to their job role.
We have compared the two forms of eLearning for you. Make a wise decision and chose the method that suits your needs.