5 Learning Methods to Use for Impactful Association Education

learning methods

Professional development professionals have much to consider when designing curricula and learning programs for association members, whose needs grow more complex and diverse virtually every day.

Adult learners today demand personalization. They want to self-direct and be free to learn at their own speed, rather than be forced to log in or attend class at a specific time or place or in a specific way. They need to be in control.

Your challenge is to meet learners with evolving educational opportunities that deploy various learning methods using multiple content types. You want to be able to deliver that information utilizing a learning management system (LMS) that is easy to use and intuitive, with the right basic features for documentation, review, and certification. Also, the broader your choice of learning method, the greater your chance of hitting the mark and delivering on your obligation to help teach members what they need to learn.

Here are five learning methods that you may want to deploy into your programs, along with how they can be facilitated by the choice of the right LMS.

Five learning methods for impactful association member activities

Being set in their ways, adults are more likely to succeed through learning experiences that fit their learning styles. Offering a mix of learning methods can help you serve the broadest possible population, enabling them to grow in their careers.

1. Self-directed learning

The connected marketplace now gives customers and clients the power and flexibility to choose how, when, and where they will engage with you and your learning experiences. That means building self-service into your offerings so they appreciate the ease of use and pay you back with loyalty, satisfaction, and trust. Due to personal autonomy and the flexibility of self-directed learning, clients can take classes when and how it makes the most sense for them and their obligations and schedules.

By offering this option, you can have an enormous impact on the ability of members to meet and exceed their goals for learning.

2. Problem-based learning

Some learners need to see actual applications of the concepts that they are expected to embrace. Problem-based learning brings real-world relevance to your programs based on current situations that demonstrate the concepts in your curriculum.

Problem-based learning is particularly effective because it encourages critical thinking and allows for real-time assessment of how well the information is being absorbed.

3. Gamification

Gamification is a learning method that involves bringing a sense of competition to encourage learning. Your LMS should have capabilities for creating game elements that encourage learners to do better and climb higher. Cadmium offers capabilities to create badges that highlight accomplishments.

Another advantage of gamification is feedback and personalization. Members can control their own path for learning and the pace that they want to move through the game/learning experience. In coordinating your professional development offerings, you can easily try different approaches to find the offerings with the greatest impact.

4. Experiential learning

Similar to problem-based learning, experiential learning involves providing hands-on experiences to showcase the practical applications of professional learning concepts. While an LMS can’t bring people together in the same room physically, the technology can still be used to develop experiences that demonstrate concepts in ways that leave an impact on users.

Experiential learning is typically viewed as more engaging and relevant to adult learning, so they can master concepts sooner.

5. Microlearning

Adult learners come in many forms. Some learn from sweeping theoretical lessons, and others learn best in digestible chunks.

You can use an LMS to design easily consumed lessons that become impactful for those who need to advance their education in a continuous fashion. You don’t need semester-long courses to get points across to your members. Short videos in particular have proven exceptionally efficient with high retention rates.

Microlearning fits the modern social media age and its short attention span. It enables communication to be done in small chunks and provides for a specific focus on relevant topics or skills.

Ensuring learning objectives with Elevate by Cadmium

To be effective as a professional development coordinator, you need to ensure that members have their learning objectives met across their activities in many different contexts. For that, you need assets that deliver learning intuitively, with an easy-to-use interface that members can use to accomplish their goals and professional requirements.

Elevate by Cadmium is an LMS that has the flexibility to provide for the numerous learning styles that you will find in your association.

Elevate, the leading LMS for associations, enables professional educators to develop curricula, certifications, knowledge sharing, and social learning to help association members meet their learning objectives. Schedule a demo today to see how your association can use the platform to its advantage while delivering exceptional professional experiences.