Publish at June 27 2022 Updated June 27 2022

Online training: boring movies or challenging course?

Against sleepiness and passivity, call the educational engineers!

During the confinements imposed by the Covid epidemic between 2020 and 2021, training organizations have had to implement online training, sometimes overnight. With the results that we know: entire days of video conferencing, students often depressed, trainers overloaded, schedules disrupted. But also many opportunities revealed, habits formed, development prospects... Online training has become commonplace, with its many flaws and its immense qualities.

It has not, however, replaced face-to-face. On the contrary, today we are witnessing a certain return of the pendulum : fed up with screens, let's find our colleagues and trainers in the flesh !

Online training: we can't do without it anymore

Nevertheless, the training organization that neglects to propose a remote offer would today take a big risk. That of seeing a significant part of its clientele, tempted to train online - and now accustomed to doing so - move away, without upsetting its entire life organization. 

At first glance, there is therefore no shortage of work for digital training producers, who must manage increasingly large, systematic and... highly publicized orders.

Is filming an expert enough to transform his or her knowledge into learning material ?

Video has found its place next to the e-learning module on the top step of the podium for training resources. It seems very practical indeed: in common representations, it would be enough to film an expert to capture his knowledge. The prescriber is tempted to show how well he or she is able to mobilize knowledge on a given subject. And so we see the appearance of courses of 70, 100 or even 140 video capsules...

The budgets allocated to online training have not increased in proportion to the number of educational resources to be produced. Certainly, the final production costs have dropped. There are now tools that allow for mass production of video, ready-to-use animation effects, and mountains of royalty-free images and sounds. But upstream of the production process, there is still a fundamental step that distinguishes a real and good course from a bank of organized resources: the pedagogical design. And this one is achieved, again and again, with human reflection, method, experience, dialogue and time. 

Instructional engineers, the top chefs of training

To design an online course, nothing can replace at the moment instructional engineers. Their forte is not just knowledge of the tools. These educational engineers know how to put themselves in the learner's shoes thanks to their background in cognitive psychology, educational science and neuroscience.

Do we need to remind you again, neuroscience has shown that learner participation is essential for the effectiveness of training. Discover, evaluate, interact, participate: educational engineers will mobilize their know-how to translate these major principles into training sequences, In passing, they will allow you to say goodbye to the myth of learning styles, not saturate or disgust the learner with too many resources or adapt the types of resources to the content to be shared.

In addition, instructional engineers are methodical. They present clear deliverables, which will serve as reference points  a lesson plan or pedagogical itinerary, a general storyboard predicting the location of the different elements, detailed storyboards for each resource... They will also know how to prepare asynchronous activities, such as quizzes that give real indications of the learner's progress, capture their attention and help them acquire knowledge.

Saving time and money, for increased efficiency

A training is effective when it allows those who attend it to learn. And this is true no matter how long it is  5 minutes or 3 hours, the objective is always the same, and one does not learn " better " by learning " more ".

The training production project is efficient when it is economical in time and money for those involved. For this, it is necessary to avoid repetition, superfluous resources that will confuse the learner, and to adopt a clear design method.

When your car breaks down, would you rather entrust it to your mechanic than your hairdresser? Then entrust your online courses to instructional engineers. And above all, trust them. 


What roles for new media in digital training? Lalamedia, 2021.

Learning styles: an enduring concept.  CTREQ Laughter, 2021. How to disgust your learners with e-learning? Sydology, 2022. 

Digital learning and face-to-face training: what are the differences? HR Culture, 2020.

The job of an instructional engineer. 123 profession.

The benefits of instructional engineering for the company and employees. Executive Coaching.

Is there a difference between a media designer and an instructional engineer? Wiki Fandom.

Image credit: Adobe stock

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