Mental Patterns: How Do They Affect Student Results?
How to design an online course so that students can connect content with their experiences? Here are some tips on how to use trainee's mindsets.
Everything we see, hear, study or, in general, with which we come into contact, passes through a "filter" of our mind. They are the so-called "mental patterns". These are thought models that our brain uses to interpret external stimuli but also to organize information, for example, helping us to associate it with others already stored. For eLearning, this phenomenon is extremely important. In fact, the question to ask is: how can I help trainees to remember the information contained in the online course effectively? Here are some tips:
1. Discover the experiences of the students
We already know how important the satisfaction questionnaires are offered to students at the end of the course. However, before the training course begins, it is possible to propose a further survey to better understand the experiences of the students compared to the topic of the course. What are their expectations? How familiar is the main topic? What is their study method?
2. Provide several reference points
Despite the usefulness of the surveys that can be performed at the beginning of the course, we will never be able to know in detail the mental patterns of our students. For this reason, it is essential to give students "support points", that is, reference points that can allow you to connect the information contained in the training path with your own experiences. For this, it can be useful to insert external links, make real examples, insert support videos.
3. Use technicalities with caution
Depending on the level of knowledge of the topic of the online course, attention must be paid to the technicalities. In general, in fact, it is preferable to insert the technical terms little by little, always trying to contextualize the words. It can be useful to create a glossary, easily accessible, which allows students to immediately remember, even visually, the meaning of the terms.
4. Use the forum to share experiences
In order to help students connect the contents of the online course with their own mental patterns and, consequently, to memorize them more easily, it can be useful to encourage them to talk about their experiences, for example in the course forum. In this way, in addition to helping other students, the student himself can contextualize the information.
5. Use related content
Regardless of the mental patterns of each student, it is essential that the course has a good structure. What does it mean? It means that you must make sure that the lessons are connected to each other, avoiding that you go from one concept to another without any type of common thread.
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