For the online learning world

Learning designMobile

Move away from your monitor and take your digital learning on the move

So much self-paced learning is designed with a focus on computer-based delivery. We sit in front of our laptops or our monitors and interact with the learning content. In a lot of instances, this is great, large screen real estate, the ability to utilise keyboard and mouse-based interaction types and the ability for learners to easily move between different modules, browser tabs and applications as needed. However, this style of learning consumption can be quite restrictive, at a minimum you need to find somewhere for a laptop and once set up it is often easier to complete larger pieces of learning in a single sitting. Mobile responsive learning takes the complication away from accessing learning content, making it available to learners anywhere, anytime.

Design with mobile-first in mind

Across both academic and corporate sectors, our learners are consistently on the go, and their learner needs to be available when and where they need it. Whether it’s grabbing 5 minutes in the quad to study between classes, completing the latest compliance learning-bite before work on the train or quickly brushing up on a skill needed for a current project while waiting to pick up the kids from school.

Traditional digital learning was not designed for use of mobile devices, resulting in inflexible learning only available for completion via a pc or laptop. Learners are then forced to make time in their day to schedule in learning activities, not fitting in learning around them and their needs.

The saviour is mobile-first, digital learning. By creating bite-sized, full responsive learning content with a mobile-first plan in place from scoping, through to design, development and implementation and delivered by a learning platform with an exceptional mobile user experience, learning suddenly becomes flexible, available and freely accessible.

Removing the need to start up a pc or laptop (or even have one available) learners can suddenly take advantage of the moments in their day (big or small) to undertake their learning, that were previously unavailable. Learners can also access learning at their time of need, for example, an employee standing in front of the new printer in the office, with no idea how to use it, could open up a printer 101 learning bite that could step them through the equipment use, right then and there, guiding them through the process.

So where do I start?

Every journey as they say starts with a first step. Creating a great mobile-first learning experience starts with a solid plan. Consider what outcomes you are trying to achieve with your mobile learning and how you would like your learners to interact with your content.

The big step though is bringing the content to life. This involves elegant learning design, focused on small engagement learning elements, with minimal words and mobile-friendly interactions. The other important aspect of this is the eLearning authoring tool you utilise (or if you have the technical expertise you may choose to create a bespoke solution). Very few authoring tools produce content that is truly mobile responsive, so make sure you’re selecting the right choice for you and your mobile learners.

Mobile-based learning is only set to grow in popularity and volume of content over the coming years, so having a mobile-first learning strategy in place now is going to ensure you are prepared to create great learning experiences now and into the future.

Catherine Duncan

Catherine Duncan

Catherine is a learning technologies and digital education practitioner with over twelve years experience across a variety of industries. She enjoys using her technical, educational and creative knowledge to assist organisations in determining their technical and/or training requirements and assisting them in finding the optimum solution.

One thought on “Move away from your monitor and take your digital learning on the move

  • Awesome post Catherine !
    I constantly see people accessing our own online course via tablets and phones these days.
    So you are correct, mobile first as a design process is really needed these days.
    Even something as simple as left aligning content in Moodle, and not indenting or centring can help!


Add a reply or comment...