Companies have long known the financial benefits of online training over physical classroom learning. In fact, companies can save anywhere between 50–70 % on training costs by switching to e-learning alternatives. So naturally it was love at first sight for company bean counters and executives; however, humans, or e-learners, clearly were not so impressed.
Early assessments of e-learning iterations were pretty unanimous: they were dry, boring, technically complicated and didn’t satisfy any quality benchmarks. In other words, the courses weren’t top notch, according to Francisco J. Garcia Penalvo, professor at the University of Salamanca who documented the origins and subsequent growth of e-learning in his book, “Advances in E-learning: Experiences and Methodologies.”
“In spite of everything, the growth of e-learning is unstoppable, and every important institution (academic, enterprise, or otherwise) knows about the necessity of creating and developing a department or service specially devoted to this subject. E-learning deserves to be considered as a real revolution, ‘The Globalization of Training,’” Penalvo said.
Many of those early complaints are now in the past as e-learning has matured over the last ten years and evolved into a human-centric learning experience with technology (ironically) aiding the e-learning “revolution” Penalvo speaks of enthusiastically.
Although a reported 20% of surveyed individuals still note technical issues as the main frustration with e-learning, it now appears that technology has caught up with our learning preferences and e-teachers as well as learning management systems (LMS) are tempting more students than ever on a global scale. In 2015, the global market for e-learning was $170 Billion, a staggering increase of $75 billion in five years.
One technology that has allowed tremendous growth in the field of e-learning is the global penetration of mobile phones. At some point in 2016, 2.1 billion smartphones are estimated to be in use around the world. In particular, China, Indonesia and Russia are anticipated to see substantial growth in smartphone usage over the next two years. And in the case of India, smartphone usage is predicted to surpass the U.S. as the second largest user of smartphones in the world by the end of 2016. This boom has opened up a huge population to the opportunity of lifelong learning. This period of intense growth in smartphone use has tracked with the rise in e-learning to such an extent that it has been noted by Ambient Insight Research, an online resource for statistics and information related to the e-learning industry.
The report states “The astonishing growth rates and adoption rates in countries like Laos, Thailand, Uganda, Cambodia, and Ghana are good examples of once-nascent markets that became vibrant revenue opportunities for suppliers in just the last two years (literally “overnight” in the context of a learning technology product lifecycle.)”
One such company offering human-centric learning options at the vanguard of e-learning is VMEdu, Inc. Refined over seven years, the VMEdu Cloud Learning Management System (LMS) offers one of the finest platforms for e-learning currently available globally. The VMEdu LMS is open to anyone, anywhere (in any language) and offers ultimate flexibility for both students and teachers, including mobile as well as hybrid options.
VMEdu is a global leader in adult education through its multiple brands and partner ecosystem. The company has taught more than 500,000 students from 150 countries and 3,500+ companies and has an extensive V.A.T.P. (VMEdu Authorized Training Partner) network of 800+ partners in 50+ countries.
For more information on VMEdu’s e-learning courses, platform and training opportunities, visit vmedu.com.
“Advances in E-Learning: Experiences and Methodologies,” Francisco J. Garcia Penalvo, University of Salamanca. 2008. Information Science Reference, Hershey, NY.
“Mobile Worldwide Active Smartphone Users Forecast 2014 – 2018: More Than 2 Billion by 2016” Ambika Choudhary Mahajan, Dec. 18, 2014. http://dazeinfo.com/2014/12/18/worldwide-smartphone-users-2014-2018-forecast-india-china-usa-report/
“International E-Learning Market Research Report 2015,” Ambient Insight Research http://www.ambientinsight.com/Reports/eLearning.aspx#section2
“The Top eLearning Statistics and Facts For 2015 You Need To Know” eLearning Industry