The Risks of E- Training and Computer-Based Learning

It may be a bit old fashioned that the view that face-to-face training is more effective than any other kind of training—with the right trainer or training team, that is.

Why not use all the tools we have?  Let students pace themselves and repeat what’s necessary to facilitate learning.  This kind of training makes sense, at least financially and it fills the training need.  Or, does it?  Does it really do the job in the long run?  Do students come away motivated and filled with new, usable information?  They certainly filled the square.

We’ve all seen training departments reduced in size, their missions diminished, and budgets slashed—especially when it comes to personal training.  It’s so much easier to rely on the electronic tools of the Internet, webinars when live seminars won’t do, and videoconferencing calls.  We can do training, demonstrations, sales pitches, brainstorming, facilitation via Windows Live, AOL Messenger, or Skype or any of a multitude of similar software communication applications.  Really.  We can see and hear others; we can even view presentations and videos.  But it’s not really the same as face-to-face training, is it?  Or, like hands-on training via demonstration?  Those activities all take a guiding hand.

I’m sure you have taken online courses or training to fulfill this or that requirement.  Did you really care about learning the material or did you just go through the motions to get the certification?  That’s the major difference.

A person in front of you can help you care about what it is you are learning and have an impact on how you remember it.  It must be important; or why are you having a person actually present the information and try to motivate me to remember it?  You can ask questions—even dumb ones and get the personal touch.  You also send the message:  I care about you, the employee.  When the employee gets that message, loyalty goes up along with productivity.  Who can deny we will work hardest for someone who cares about us?

For more resources about training, see the Training library.

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