Written by Anuj Vyas.
AI and its use in eLearning might still be in its infancy today. Nevertheless, it's potential is steadily being realised, with more and more professionals recognising it's importance and incorporating it. In Part II of exploring AI, we look at AI in eLearning; it's potential, use-cases and the challenges in the way of AI technology being widespread in the eLearning industry.
Traditional eLearning still measures itself against the efficiency and retention achieved by traditional classroom training. In turn, blended learning tries to circumvent the pain points of a traditional, web-only eLearning format by introducing social & interactive elements like live sessions with trainers, audio/visual segments and user interaction based on social platforms. In recent years, we have hit a development and technological ceiling with the tools at hand, because the pathways and content itself stays human designed and static.
AI addresses this static part of eLearning productions and revolutionises the eLearning experience.
Applications of AI in eLearning
The success of recommendation systems in streaming services such as Netflix has paved the way for the real time adjustment of one’s learning content. This is already being done in the form of Adaptive Learning systems & Learning experience platforms. In these systems, the dynamic data generated by users & trainers is analysed constantly during a training course. The results are then used to optimise the learning pathways available to a participant in the course of a training.
From the same data, personal, performance & thematic variables can be deduced which are then used to create personalised learning content for the learner. This ensures that the content is curated and addresses particular needs and shortcomings of every learner. This is especially useful in corporate training, where the learning content is usually detailed and lengthy, and trainees in the same learning group have different needs and expectations. It can save time resources on the management’s side and increase retention and the effect of upskilling, if the course can tailor itself automatically to cater to each individuals’ needs, thus ensuring course relevance and quality management with little input needed from the trainers.
Virtual assistants can answer specific content-related questions, automatically suggest content to the user on the basis of pre-defined learning objectives and serve as personal chatbot companions to the course. In the future, AI chatbots could cross the fine line between an automated chat and a complex consultancy system, where learners could engage with the assistant in complex interactions, such as career consultancy.
AI can generate content for training. It can analyse data covering specific fields and streams, and using this data, generate augmented learning content, or customised courses and summaries from entire subject fields. Traditionally, this has meant investing hundreds of man-hours from HR professionals annually, with trainers compiling knowledge bases from tons of content, and then creating questions & quizzes based on that content, analysing learner statistics and finally engaging the learner.
In the future, AI will likely be responsible for any compilation of relevant subjects into streamlined and evaluable modules, thus saving millions in time and resource allocation. The big picture is that this will further help to ensure that HR activities and new concepts evolve quicker, as professionals spend less and less of their time on non-creative aspects of training.
Challenges now & in the future
The main challenge for the AI revolution to take hold and become the norm in corporate training is the lack of knowledge/ expertise with the technology surrounding AI. In an industry survey, 65% of companies in the Germany-Austria-Switzerland region responded that they are still not sure about the benefits offered by AI in corporate training.
To further complicate matters, 55% of the companies also state their lack of their familiarity and expertise on the topic of AI for not adopting AI- based technology.
This is a common feature in most non-IT sectors. When faced with an evolving landscape that demands fundamental restructuring & relearning of the support staff itself, adaptation is slow.
It’s not all bad news though. Close to 70% of the same companies which were surveyed also acknowledged the potential of AI in workplace training, recognising the awesome value of customised learning recommendations and performance support without the intervention of support staff.
An underrated factor is also that it takes time and resources to upgrade the current systems that are in place; after all, setting up an AI based training system – LMS compatibility, content, training philosophy & scheduling – takes time and must go through an intense period of testing and development to be fully capable. Moreover, it is difficult to say how long this transformation phase lasts; every company has unique needs and stages of readiness. The size of the organisation and industry type is also a crucial factor. Faced with this, companies often prefer continuity and delay transformation.
As a short conclusion, Artificial Intelligence can revolutionise training (it has in many ways already), but it is also true vice-versa; corporate training can also benefit Artificial Intelligence. After all, without the existence of success stories, no budding new technology can procure the required funding and exposure needed to enter the mainstream.
Here’s hoping that new systems that embrace the technology, like our very own cBook.AI, can serve to showcase the potential of this technological marriage, and encourage additional forays into this technological goldmine. The eLearning landscape will be better for it.
Learn Tomorrow’s cBook.AI unlocks the vast potential that the technology holds in training. It uses AI in combination with KPIs to offer a personalised experience to the learner.
It is a smartphone-based Learning System, which analyses data information in real-time to deliver a personalised course through wide ranging recommendations.
cBook.ai keeps the trainers up-to-date on the status of every individual in their training group, while also creating recommended modules for each learner. This ensures the best possible course experience for the learner, while on the trainers’ side, saving energy and resources for the more dynamic aspects of training.
Anuj Vyas is a member of Learn Tomorrow. cBook.AI aims to create a new learning experience providing a personal Learning Feed, which smartly selects learning content on the basis of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Artificial Intelligence.
Learn Tomorrow is an eLearning technology provider. cBook is an integrated Learning Experience Platform (LXP) aiming to create digital learning experiences with impact. Tailored to the needs of businesses, academies & trainers.