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Learning Digitally

To support change, in a fast-evolving digital world, it is important that we have the right skills and techniques to be able to learn and develop within it.

The way we learn is changing, and there is now, more than ever before, a vast amount of information we can draw on to help us develop. The internet and mobile technology have made this information more accessible, allowing us to draw on it, where and when it is needed. Putting us very much, in the driving seat of our development.

Challenges of learning digitally

However, with these benefits come challenges, one of the main challenges faced when learning digitally is navigating the enormity of information.

  • The amount of information and information sources can be overwhelming, potentially disengaging us.
  • With the increased availability of information, the risk of consulting inaccurate, untrue, irrelevant, information sources is increased.
  • In addition, we are bombarded by digital distractions, such as social media, pop-ups and endless news stories.

Such challenges can make the process inefficient and potentially damaging to our learning, leading to incorrect beliefs. Therefore, having a strategy to help us learn digitally is essential.

A strategy for success…

Evaluate information from the source.

Being able to evaluate information is an increasingly important skill to possess and develop.

To help us develop this skill, we can ask some simple questions about the source:

  • Who has written it? Are they known, respected experts in their field, is it a recognised institution such as the CIPD? Are others saying a similar thing?
  • Why was it written? Evaluate the motivations behind the source. Was it produced to promote a product or service, or to advocate for a certain political cause? Consider any potential biases.
  • How was it written? What sources have been consulted to put the information together, are they credible, reliable sources?
  • When was it written? Older sources may not be as current and therefore relevant, however, not always the case. Think of our good friend Maslow.
  • Is the information relevant to your sector, country, and demographic? Asking these questions can help us narrow down our search and mitigate some of the risks of using invalid information in our development.

Have some credible, go-to sources.

Rather than endlessly searching for valid, relevant information, we can have some credible go-to sources. Such sources will vary depending on the industry we work in. I have included some of the sources which I use as a digital tutor within the HR profession:

  • CIPD – for HR & L&D guidance and advice
  • ONS – for a wide range of UK government statistics.
  • OECD – International economic information.
  • ACAS – for UK legal guidance and advice.Towards Maturity - for L&D professionals
  • Industry-specific publications/journals i.e. People Management – help us to keep up with current trends and changes.

Tips from experience for learning digitally.

Other tips for learning digitally that I have picked up from my students over the years as a digital tutor at AVADO Learning:

  1. Collaboration is key, share your learning, resources and understanding with others. Set up networks through social media platforms and WhatsApp groups. The groups which I tutor who form the most collaborative support groups are the ones that perform better, time after time.
  2. Be aware of your digital footprint – what you write can potentially be around forever and can easily be shared and taken out of context.
  3. Log sources as you build a bank of resources you can later refer to.
  4. Aim to understand information rather than remember every detail.
  5. Use the abundance of excellent online videos to complement learning and gain an understanding of complex subjects.

Check out Avado, the UK’s most trusted CIPD course provider today for HR and L&D courses:

CIPD Level 3 HR and L&D qualification: The CIPD Level 3 Certificate in people practice is ideal for anyone looking to start a career in either HR or Learning and Development.

CIPD Level 5 HR qualification: The CIPD Level 5 Associate Diploma in People Management will help you build on your existing HR knowledge.

CIPD Level 5 L&D qualification: The CIPD Level 5 Diploma in Organisational Learning and Development is the most comprehensive course available for L&D professionals, ideal for you if you want to formalise your existing experience, skills and knowledge.

CIPD Level 7 HR qualification: The CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma is aimed at expanding learners’ autonomy so they can strategically direct organisations and their people.

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Nilesh Jha