Bite-Sized Learning: What is Microlearning?

September 16, 2023
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As our attention spans continue to shrink, the traditional approach to learning is no longer as effective as it once was. 

Enter microlearning: a learning approach that involves breaking down a complex subject matter into small, bite-sized pieces of content that can be consumed in short bursts. These microlearning modules are designed to be brief, focused, and subject-specific, making it easier for learners (like you!) to retain knowledge. 

Microlearning is distinct from traditional learning methods in that it emphasizes small, bite-sized microlearning courses that can be completed in just a few short, focused minutes, and it often incorporates multimedia elements such as videos and interactive quizzes.

Curious to learn more? In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the concept of microlearning, its benefits, methods, real-world applications, and how to start with the Elevate app.

What are the Benefits of Microlearning?

In addition to being more flexible and convenient than traditional learning methods, microlearning has several other benefits:  

  • Enhanced knowledge retention: By breaking down complex subjects into smaller, more manageable pieces, you’re better able to absorb and retain information. Microlearning also emphasizes repetition and reinforcement, which helps to solidify learning, prevent forgetting, and increase long-term retention.
  • Time efficiency and learner engagement: Short, focused pieces of microlearning content are more likely to keep learners engaged and motivated, leading to better learning outcomes. Microlearning is also more flexible than traditional learning methods, as you can access content on your own schedule and at your own pace. This makes it easier for you to fit learning into your likely busy life and can increase your participation.
  • Customizable learning paths: You can choose the topics or skills you want to learn and complete modules in any order you prefer. This makes learning more personalized and empowers you to take control of your own development.
  • Cost-effective learning: Microlearning can be more cost-effective than traditional learning methods because it typically requires less time and resources to develop and deliver, reducing the need for expensive in-person training sessions or workshops.

As you can see, microlearning offers many advantages over traditional learning methods. Its focus on smaller, more manageable pieces of content can enhance knowledge retention, while its flexibility and learner engagement make it a popular choice for organizations and individuals seeking to improve their skills and knowledge.

Microlearning Methods and Strategies

There are several common microlearning best practices and techniques that can be used to create an engaging, subject-specific learning module. These include videos, podcasts, infographics, quizzes, and interactive games

Technology has made microlearning easier than ever before, as videos and podcasts are immensely effective ways to deliver information in an easily digestible format. Infographics can also help to simplify complex information and make it more visually appealing. And virtual quizzes and interactive games can help reinforce learning and provide an element of fun.

If you want to incorporate a microlearning strategy into your learning routine, it's important to first identify the key topics or skills that you’d like to learn. 

From there, content can be broken down into small, focused, subject-specific pieces that are relevant to your learning needs and can be consumed in short bursts so you stay motivated and on track. 

It's also just as important to provide opportunities for you to apply what you’ve learned through quizzes, interactive games, or other reinforcement activities. Or, you know, during your next brown bag lunch at work. 

3 Examples of Real-World Applications of Microlearning

Microlearning a versatile learning approach that can be applied across various sectors, including business, education, and personal development. 

Here are some examples of successful microlearning applications in each sector:

  1. Business: In the business sector, microlearning can be used to train employees on specific skills or subjects. For example, sales teams can use short videos or interactive games to learn about new products or sales techniques. Microlearning can also be used for compliance training or to teach employees about company policies and procedures. 
  2. Education: Educational institutions can use microlearning to supplement traditional teaching methods and enhance your learning experience. For example, teachers can use short videos or infographics to introduce new topics or reinforce key concepts. Microlearning can also be used for test prep or to provide additional resources for students who need extra help.
  3. Personal development: Microlearning can be useful for personal development, using short, focused learning modules to acquire new skills or knowledge. For example, someone could use a series of short videos to learn a new language or develop their coding skills. Microlearning can also be used for personal finance education or to learn about health and wellness topics. By providing convenient and accessible content, microlearning can make it easier for you to pursue your personal development goals.

Have you participated in microlearning in any of these sectors? 

Utilizing Digital Tools for Microlearning

As we’ve mentioned before, technology has played a crucial role in facilitating microlearning. But with so much information out there, it can be difficult to parse through which digital tool might work best for you. Here, we’ll discuss how to effectively utilize digital tools with examples. 

Bite-Sized Learning Sessions in Digital Applications

Digital tools are convenient, as they offer short, focused modules that you can complete on your own schedule. Mobile devices also play a key role in microlearning, because you’re able to access content on-the-go. 

Here are some specific examples of microlearning sessions available in digital learning tools:

  • Podcasts: Audio content that can be listened to on-the-go
  • Videos: Short video clips that can be easily consumed and understood
  • Interactive games: Learning activities that engage users through interactivity and gamification (Our favorite is the Elevate app.) 

Personalized Microlearning with Digital Tools

Digital learning tools also offer the potential for personalized microlearning experiences. By utilizing data about your preferences, performance, and needs, platforms can personalize your learning modules in many different ways. 

And you can use this personalization to your advantage because it actually enhances learning outcomes by providing you with content that is relevant to your needs and interests. It also allows you to progress at your own pace and focus on areas where you need the most help.

Overall, by making learning more accessible and personalized, digital tools can enhance engagement and improve knowledge retention for learners like you. 

Start Microlearning with Elevate Today

As you can see, microlearning is a revolutionary approach to learning and development that’s gaining popularity across various sectors thanks to its flexibility, personalization, and accessibility. By breaking down complex subjects into small, bite-sized pieces of content, microlearning enhances knowledge retention and improves learning outcomes. 

And if you’re looking for an easy, fun, and low-lift way to do start microlearning, check out Elevate, an award-winning brain training app.

The Elevate app offers 40+ games backed by science and is designed to improve your vocabulary, mental math, memory skills, and more. Plus, it features personalized brain training workouts that you can complete daily that’s less than 5 minutes long, with some games as short as just a single minute. How’s that for a daily brain boost? 

Download Elevate on iOS or Android now, and start microlearning today!

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