Self-paced learning is something most of us have experienced at one time or another. Whether it was taking a class online, signing up for a course via a platform like Skillcrush, or simply going on a walking tour of a museum. It can feel like a combination of different types of learning. As an adult, self-paced learning can also be helpful when it’s time to get back into the swing of things and learn something new. It is also a great option if you only have a specific amount of time to spend learning a subject, need to review something after a long break, or if you only want to learn something specific at a certain pace. This training also provides opportunities for interactive and immersive self-paced learning activities due to its independent nature. We’ve highlighted some of the best options below.
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What is Self-Paced Learning?
Self-paced learning is a type of learning that allows you to take control of your own education. Learning at your own pace means you can learn when and where it’s best for you. Self-paced learning is not just limited to adults; children who want to gain reading, writing, and math skills can also take advantage of self-paced learning opportunities. Two words you may associate with self-paced learning are ‘independent’ and ‘self-directed.’ Self-paced learning is all about taking charge of your own learning and not being limited to any one process or method.
One of the best things about self-paced learning is how customizable it is. You may have specific needs or goals that are different from those of other learners. For example, if you need more time to practice with flashcards or do more exercises on Skillcrush, then you can set your own pace for the material and make sure you get what you need out of the course material.
The following are a few ways we practice self-paced learning in our daily lives without realizing it:
1) Reading Articles – If you have ever been curious about something, you likely did a quick Google search and began reading an article in order to gain information. Articles and blogs are an excellent way to learn something new and stay updated on current events. Blogs and articles offer a great way to find new information quickly and are usually written by experts in their field or by those interested in a topic.
2) Listening to Podcasts – People these days listen to podcasts quite a bit. They have almost eclipsed the idea of radio, although radio stations are still in existence. Podcasts range from educational topics like grammar lessons and vocabulary building, business tips and advice, or simply listening in on interesting conversations between people talking about life experiences. Podcasts are great to listen to while commuting to work or working out, making podcasts a great option for those who don’t have much time but still want the chance to learn something new.
Self-Paced Learning Activities Online Courses
Self-paced training allows students to access content in an online course without meeting with a teacher or attending a class. Self-paced training can help teachers mitigate the impact of students who have varying needs and learning styles. It also helps students who cannot spend time with a teacher or attend a class. Self-paced learning is the most popular way to learn.
The Best Self-Paced Learning Activities for Adult Learners
You might be wondering how self-paced training works. Won’t students get bored and log off? After all, if it is self-paced there is a lot of leeway just to slack off right? Wrong! Self-paced training actually allows students to take control of their learning and do what they want to do. They are not beholden to listening to a lecture and taking tests. They can access highly interactive activities that keep them engaged and help them learn information in a new way. Not to mention, they can be mindful of what they’re doing and take their time with a subject. The methods below are just some ways that self-paced training can be made highly enjoyable and interactive. The list below is not exhaustive, but it is an idea of some self-paced learning activities.
Make a Podcast
Making a podcast is an excellent self-paced learning opportunity, especially if you’re looking to learn more about a specific topic related to your job or your studies. Podcasts are made up of audio content and can be downloaded directly on a smartphone. You can choose how long your podcast will be and what topics you want to cover. All you need is a microphone, software for recording (such as Audacity), and a speaker to share your content with listeners. While preparing to make a podcast, you will need to do a lot of research and in turn, you will learn about a topic in-depth. After all, you do not want to communicate false information!
Make a Video
Video-based learning is one of the most popular methods for self-paced learning. You can make a video about anything you want and post it to YouTube, then embed it on your blog or website to help educate people interested in what you know. The best thing about making videos is that you can record them from your phone, which means you don’t need specialized equipment like a fancy film camera or a boom mic. Videos can also include graphics and transitions to make the information more palatable.
Make a Presentation
When it comes to self-paced learning, one of the most popular self-paced learning activities is creating a presentation. By creating your own presentation on a topic or concept, you will need to do research and come up with a presentation that has a beginning, middle, and end. Graphics and charts might also help convey information. In addition, you might want to throw in an activity pertaining to the information like you are teaching a class. Presentations might also include media like videos, audio, songs, quotes, and photos. When it comes time to create the presentation itself, all you have to do is type up each point as a slide and add pictures or other visuals if needed. You can use PowerPoint, Google Slides, or Prezi.
Design a Poster
Design a poster summarizing the topic you just learned about. Not only will this help reinforce what you’ve learned, but it will also make a great decoration in your room or office! It is a great way to take advantage of a creative outlet, and if you are a more visual learner, this will help reinforce that.
Write an Online Journal
Your online journal is a great way to supplement your self-paced learning experience. For example, while you take a course you can use your blog as a way to document the process. It’s an easy way to keep track of what you’ve learned, or have yet to learn. Your journal could also be used for things like documenting your struggles with the course material and even for sharing your most successful assignments.
Interview a Professional
One of the best self-paced learning opportunities is to interview a professional. You can do this on your own or ask a friend to interview them with you. If you are taking a professional development course, for instance, this is an excellent way to get first hand insight from someone in your field or who is an expert on a topic in your field.
There are many benefits to doing this kind of learning, but here are some that stand out:
-You’ll be able to practice your interviewing skills by asking questions and recording responses.
-You can potentially learn something new about your career path.
-You’ll be able to gain valuable insights from experts.
-You have the opportunity to make a connection.
-You will receive first-hand knowledge.
If you are training for a new job skill or training to make a move up in your career, interviewing an expert is an excellent option. Interviewing a professional also helps you get a sense of what they do on a daily basis and if it might be something you want to pursue as well. It provides an opportunity to see if the profession would suit you and how the interviewer interacts with their line of work.
It is clear that remote, self-paced training is the new frontier of teaching and learning, as the need to keep up with the growing remote learning industry is stronger than ever. The beauty of self-paced training is how flexible and accommodating it is to all types of learners. We have outlined several self-paced learning activities that are present in a self-paced learning environment, but the sky is the limit!
ReadyTech provides companies and employees with a hosted training solution that offers hands-on, virtual training software to aid employees in practicing job skills. Companies that invest in employee training benefit from reduced attrition rates and hiring costs, better productivity, more knowledgeable employees, and a competitive hiring environment. ReadyTech provides you with all the software you need for your virtual classroom, and we offer a full-service setup process as well as 24/7 live support. Contact us today.