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06/05/2022 Why it is so important to define clear learing goals in online courses?

The human mind works much more effectively when it finds a sense in work such as learning. Therefore, every learning process should be provided with learning objectives (respective learning goals). And therefore, also in the field of e-learning, the online courses or online units should be provided with learning goals, so that the respective e-learning course or unit has a relevant value for the participants.

Therefore, you should make sure to define the relevant learning goals in a standardized way for each of your courses or units. This motivates the learners and enables better learning outcomes. However, you should not define the goals randomly, you should keep the following points in mind:

  • Define your learning goals as clearly and suitably as possible. What should the learners achieve? What should they be able to do after the learning process, for example, when they work in their profession.
  • Connect each learning goal to required outcomes. Learning goals should be reduced to the most basic components. One of the best ways to manage this is to link each learning objective to an outcome (for example, in a task) and a concrete benefit (for example, on the job). Then define how you will use the e-Learning tools, activities, and online resources in your online-course to address these requirements.

  • Define a time frame. This should be realistic so that the learning goals can really be achieved within this time frame. You should also define how and when you will assess learners at the end of the online course, if needed.

  • Each online course and learning unit should have its own learning goals. It is recommended to define a specific task (or a series of tasks) for each learning goal. This gives learners a clear overview of how they can successfully complete the learning unit and when they have finished a specific learning goal.

  • Link learning goals to real-life situations in professional life. Most learners use online courses not only to acquire theoretical knowledge. They want to learn new skills that they can use practically on the job. Keep reminding learners of the real-world uses of their new knowledge by defining learning goals and connecting these goals to real-life work situations. Theory is all well and good, but what really counts in the end is the practical application of knowledge.

  • Formulate the learning goals in a short and memorable way. And try to formulate the learning goals in such a way that they motivate the learners.

  • Use Bloom's Taxonomy  to formulate and order the learning goals. With Bloom's Taxonomy, learning goals can be formulated very easy with regard to the competencies and skills that the learners should achieve. In addition, the taxonomy can also be used to order the learning goals very well and put them in a logical order, so that the learning units can also be organized according to the learning goals.


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