Have you ever heard of the concept of Agile Learning and its uses in business and training? It’s an agile methodology applied to learning and, although agile methodology was born in the world of technology, today we can apply it to many areas such as training.
What is Agile Learning?
Agile Learning consists of applying agile methodologies to the field of training. In other words, the application of agile working methods in projects and learning processes. It’s based on continuous and incremental learning, which has no expiration date and seeks that the student learns quickly and agile.
Surely you have heard of Kanban boards, sprints, agile coaches… All these concepts are part of the agile methodology and are perfectly applicable to other fields, besides technology.
Agile learning is mainly used in companies with internal training, but it can also be applied in academies or training schools. It brings many benefits as it will increase the efficiency and productivity of the student, improve their capacity to change and their motivation during the training journey.
What is agile methodology?
Agile methodology focuses on people and results, adaptive planning, self-organization and short delivery times. It’s also based on communication between team members, trust, feedback and flexibility. It aims at continuous quality improvement, using tools such as Scrum, Kanban, eXtreme Programming…
Benefits of Agile Learning
Agile learning can be used in companies with internal training but it can also be applied in academies or schools. It brings many benefits, as it will increase the efficiency and productivity of the student, improve their adaptation to change and their motivation during the training journey. These are the most important benefits:
- Adapting to change
Agile learning ensures that students are quick enough to catch up. It helps them develop different skills and abilities but, above all, it teaches them to take risks and be flexible, without being afraid of change.
- Better cooperation between teams and students
People who feel they are working collaboratively with others to achieve a common goal stay engaged in projects longer. Agile learning influences this, as it relies on collaboration between students to increase continuous and collaborative learning.
- Improves efficiency and motivation
Agile learning, whether applied to a company or a training academy, motivates students and makes them more efficient. In turn, when applied to companies, it makes them more successful, since employees will be more motivated. It creates a corporate culture in which knowledge, experience and training are vital.
- Focuses on the students
This methodology puts the focus on students and their goals. Today, training is completely different from what it used to be. Today’s learner needs short information, continuous training, different means of communication with peers, and content in different formats.
- Encourages responsibility
Collaborative work, fluid communication among students and with teachers, and the participation of everyone towards the same training goal, increases both individual and team responsibility.
How to apply an agile methodology to my training or to my company’s culture?
Applying agile methodology to training is easy and we can all do it by implementing different types of methodologies to training. Some tips or examples:
- Bet on continuous training and communication
Who said that training has an expiration date? It’s the way to keep learners engaged and motivated over time. In addition, agile learning design fosters communication, collaboration and trust between teams. An example to improve continuous communication is to set up dailies (short daily meetings) in which each student can communicate their progress, their doubts or what is blocking them. Continuous communication with the teacher is also important, as the teacher becomes a coach or “guide” that encourages the student to improve every day.
- Start applying Microlearning
Microlearning is training in small learning pills. It allows you to acquire knowledge quickly without having to spend hours and hours on something you can learn in minutes. Applying microlearning is also a way of agile learning, as it’s perfect for continuous learning – you can read one training pill a day – and it’s perfectly adapted to today’s learner, who wants faster and shorter information.
- Peer to Peer learning
Peer to peer learning is a type of collaborative training between students. It allows students to learn from each other but goes beyond team learning. It focuses on making the most of the knowledge or potential of some students or colleagues so that others learn, peer to peer.
Other techniques are also valid: adapting to mobile learning so that training is fast and immediate and so that students can study anywhere and whenever they want, gamification to make training a fun experience, or for example hiring a scrum master to serve as a coach for students. There are also many agile learning centers that can help you with your needs. And of course all this can be applied to online training (agile e-learning) or face-to-face. All these tools will serve to make your training go a step further and adapt to the needs of today’s students.