We all know that looking good only gets you so far; you’ve got to have substance to really make an impression.
When it comes to websites, the same is true: it’s not just how it looks, but also how it works and feels. The ease of finding what you’re looking for, its flow, layout and predictability all play a part in what makes certain websites appealing.
Whether it’s on your desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone, great design should be seamless, intuitive and make you want to come back for more.
So just imagine how important creating a good user experience (UX) is for eLearning. If learners struggle with the look, feel and functionality of the course, they definitely won’t want to come back for more. Cue the high dropout rate and poor retention.
Today’s learners expect fast, responsive, stunning websites and personalized experiences to go along with content that’s accessible anytime, anywhere. Without it, Learning and Development teams have lost the battle before it’s even begun.
It’s Time to Get Emotional
While course architecture and the technicalities of design are important contributors to creating a good user experience, so are emotions – how learners feel using a system.
Certain colors, shapes, metaphors and representations used in a digital coursework influence the effectiveness of learning, as well as its transferability on the job. That’s because a pleasant eLearning experience facilitates and stimulates learning.
Research shows that when a positive effect is created through emotional design features, learners are able to finish courses with a high sense of accomplishment and confidence in their capabilities. Emotionally-relevant learning helps learners make sense of the content and absorb it better, leading to more creative on-the-job problem solving.
Removing the Roadblocks
In an increasingly networked world, people conduct their personal and business affairs through multiple devices. Users start reading content on one device, then swap to another device and continue to engage with the same content but in a different context.
Only courses that capture and hold learners’ attention have a fighting chance of meeting your learning outcomes. The last thing you want is for the learner to have to clunk through the course, trying to figure out where to navigate to next or struggling to understand what’s expected of them. Instead, they should be focusing their brain power on the content itself, not on the stumbling blocks they encounter.
A user experience that is enjoyable, instinctual and accessible simplifies the learning process in a way that encourages the learners to stay engaged and interested.
Looking good isn’t enough – it needs to work flawlessly too.
Xpan develops digital learning solutions for companies globally. From design to deployment, our team is making heroes of Learning and Development Officers and contributing to the worldwide number of individuals improving their workplace experience (and lives) with better learning.