E-Learning was thought of as a method to increase engagement using some kind of electronic resource. Although it is flexible and allows content to reach a wider audience, the transference of knowledge is very often one-way.
Simulation-based learning, on the other hand, promotes greater engagement and retention of knowledge. It has slowly become the preferred choice for training and education with companies like PwC, KPMG and Deloitte incorporating such methods in their corporate training programmes.
Greater motivation and engagement
Due to the gamified elements in simulation-based learning, learners are more motivated to participate and actively engage in the learning process. According to a research done by the University of Hong Kong, learners in gamified environments tend to invest more efforts on learning and are more cognitively engaged. With gamification elements such as badges and leaderboards, learners are able to view their progress against their peers, promoting a greater sense of ownership of one’s learning and development.
Application of knowledge in a simulated environment
Simulation-based learning maximizes safety and minimizes risks. According to Karl Kapp, simulations are realistic control risk environments where learners can practice specific behaviours and decisions. Learners can then experience the impacts of those behaviours or decisions. Simulations promote the practice of realistic skills, not abstract skills, that can be applied in real life scenarios. Since certain distracting variables are removed, learners can stay focused on the instructional goals and truly practice as well as apply what they know to test themselves.
Identify areas for improvement through trial and error
The learning experience in a simulated environment is often immersive, where learning occurs through trial and error. Since the simulation provides learners with certain controls over a problem or situation, the learner is given the flexibility and freedom to test out different strategies. Such elements enable the tracking of learners’ performance and the mastery of important concepts.
Simulation-based learning is clearly a better and more cost-effective option for training than e-learning. Try out a gamified simulation for yourself to see how it works!
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