May 18, 2021

Break out of the classroom: How to deliver engaging learning experiences remotely

Teaching & training 5 min read last updated on: Jun 04, 2021

The break out of the classroom series is focused on giving you the best tips and tricks for teaching and training effectively in the digital, post-pandemic world. Whether you are upskilling or reskilling your employees to ensure a bright future for your organization or educating the leaders of tomorrow in a business school, Barco is here to support you.

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In our vision, to break out of the classroom means embracing the many and exciting possibilities of the new digital world. It is a pledge to create flexible and engaging learning experiences that will deliver long lasting results in an interesting and interactive manner. At the same time, it represents keeping in mind the importance of quality human interactions and enabling meaningful connections that transcend geographical borders. That´s what weConnect is for. 

Furthermore, it implies using technology as a tool powering pedagogy, driven by learning objectives and desired outcomes. It´s about being open, innovative and thinking of better ways of learning. The modern times we are living and working in require adapted methods: more flexible, more varied, easily accessible and particularly important – more engaging.  

Making sure the audience stays engaged is one of the most common challenges in teaching and training remotely, as frequently mentioned by our customers. In a recent research report by AMBA & BGA on the digitalization of business education, lack of student engagement is regarded as the second most common challenge in delivering online education. 

An engaged audience will retain information easier and benefit from improved learning outcomes. That is why, we have listed 3 practical tips to keep participants engaged throughout their learning journey. 

breakout-of-classroom

1. Capture and keep attention 

Attention is the first step in the learning journey and crucial in acquiring new knowledge. With so many things competing for our attention in this fast-paced, interconnected world, attention is increasingly difficult to maintain.  

So how can teachers and trainers capture and keep it? Start by designing virtual live sessions that are short (maximum one hour), interesting and varied. Use appealing videos, infographics, large images, little text and few numbers. Create regular touch points with quizzes, polls and open-ended questions throughout the session and monitor the answers. Keep a close eye on your participants, watch body language and face expressions closely for any signs of disengagement.  
 
After a live session, access and analyze user data on attention, engagement and responsiveness to the content shared to optimize future classes. Lastly, redesign assignments for virtual teaching, invite participants to deliver them in multimedia formats such as a recorded videos or live presentations. 

The Barco weConnect virtual classroom helps make an impact on every single person in the audience. Teachers and trainers stand in front of their audience and see learners in real size, which makes reading expressions, body language and monitoring attention easier than ever. You can encourage quality interaction and share varied, interactive content such as videos, polls and quizzes. You can monitor participants and offer support whenever necessary, even in breakout rooms. 

2. Enable human connection

Enabling human connections virtually is challenging and at a point in time when most of us are still in remote working and learning mode, the need for human connection and quality interaction is more pronounced than ever. Keeping the human angle when teaching and training remotely will make learning more interesting, pleasant and effective. 

An important tip would be to get to know the participants, remember their names, who they are and where they´re from; also to check in regularly with them on a one-to-one basis throughout the entire learning journey. These small details will make the difference in each learner´s experience.  

If at the beginning participants don´t know each other, organize a fun, ice-breaker activity. During sessions, give frequent opportunities to engage and discuss. Put people into small groups, create breakout rooms and give them collaborative tasks: solve a problem, discuss a business case, play roles in a sales or customer scenario. 

With Barco weConnect you will support participants to form strong ties and learn in a fun, interactive way, thanks to our enhanced breakout room feature. The teacher or trainer can stay fully connected to the audience, keep visual contact with everyone, easily spot participants asking for help, and can still share content in the main room that will be visible while in breakout.  

At the same time, learners can freely collaborate and access shared breakout content, as well as the content from the main session. They can easily switch between the multiple views, ask questions, chat with peers, answer polls and quizzes, draw or add pins to the whiteboard.

3. Stimulate retention

Learning is not over when the live training session is over. Knowledge can quickly be forgotten if it is not reinforced, hence retention measures must be thought of when designing learning paths.  

The best solution is to use a blended learning mode, which involves different delivery methods and tools for teaching and disseminating knowledge: synchronous and asynchronous, remote and onsite. 

While remote or onsite instructor-led sessions will allow for active application of concepts and collaboration, on-demand learning will provide flexibility and empower participants to study at their own pace. Combined, the two will support enhanced learning outcomes in a faster and enjoyable manner.  

How to do that? In most learning environments, be it virtual classroom or conferencing solution, you can record live sessions, make them available fully or repurpose them into bite-sized knowledge pieces that can be watched at one´s convenience. Make self-paced learning content mobile- and tablet-friendly so it can be accessed from any device. Provide cheat sheets, handouts and summaries that are easily accessible to retrieve key information when needed. 

Throughout the learning journey but also after, share regularly curated content that supports the initial learning program and keeps participants informed about related trainings. 

Lastly, as mentioned earlier, you should analyze data provided by the technology solution you are using. Check engagement rates and track responses. From there, you will be able to understand just how well a course is being assimilated by the participants.  
 
The Barco WeConnect platform allows recording sessions and gathers relevant engagement metrics that will allow you to optimize future classes and outcomes. Gathering data opens the door to an overall improved learning journey, participants´ performance and teachers´ efficiency. 
 

Breaking out of the classroom and into a first-class teaching and learning experience that is engaging, interactive and delivers enhanced learning outcomes is not always an easy task. But with the right adjustments when designing the learning journey and by choosing the right technology solution, powered by well defined pedagogical objectives, your remote learning programs will prove a tremendous success. 

You can join one of our demo sessions or read more about how the Barco weConnect virtual classroom solution can enable flexible and engaging learning experiences that will deliver long lasting results in an interesting and interactive manner. 

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