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Virtual Learning, Virtual Learning Environment, and Virtual Training

For over a decade, Wilson Learning has been leveraging technology to deliver virtual training solutions with expert facilitators for customers around the globe. Over the past few years, the need for virtual learning has increased exponentially as companies need to limit travel budgets and look for new ways to train dispersed workforces. At the same time, Internet, phone, and video conferencing technologies have advanced and are more effective and affordable as training tools.

As a leader in the delivery of distance learning, Wilson Learning has developed a broad understanding of the unique requirements for learning in virtual environments. We know how to avoid some of the common problems by making sure we use great instructional design to leverage the technology effectively. And our expert facilitators use their experience and skills in new ways to keep learners engaged and involved.

      Common Questions about Virtual Learning:

      The concept of virtual learning appeals to many organizations, yet still involves a myriad of questions on the specifics of development and delivery. Some of the most common questions our clients ask include:

      • What is virtual learning, anyway? Is it any more than a talking head or a PowerPoint webcast?
      • How do you keep people actively focused during the session rather than multitasking, which presents a major barrier to real learning?
      • With varying degrees of technology proficiency, how do you ensure all the participants are comfortable with the learning platform?
      • What do facilitators need to do differently when facilitating a virtual program?

      Critical Success Factors for Effective Virtual Learning

      Wilson Learning has identified the following virtual learning critical success factors (CSFs) – that handful of things that must go right for learning goals to be met. These CSFs also address the questions listed above.

      • Learning Design: The learning design must drive a constant stream of engaging learning activities – whiteboards, breakout rooms, polling, group work, video, and more.
      • Real Application: Participants must be engaged within small groups in continuous practice and ongoing application.

        Small groups of 2–5 might work together throughout the program on case studies or other activities, working in smaller breakout rooms and applying learning. This leads to accountability and engages participants by involving them in the learning.
      • Technology: The technology platform must be user-friendly and allow for real-time work. Participants work collaboratively on electronic documents that allow for practice and application.
      • Materials: Materials must focus the participant on the core learning and support immediate application. Visuals must be appealing and engaging, without detracting from the main learning agenda.
      • Facilitators: The facilitator must engage individual participants throughout the process and make the technology components seamless. An expert virtual facilitator must handle a number of challenges – keeping up the energy level across the remote group, “netting out” the presentation of new content with clear and compelling language, and encouraging individual input and participation.

      Wilson Learning Leads with Experience

      For over a decade Wilson Learning has been helping clients deliver training to employees virtually. Our experience includes delivering virtual programs to help organizations address key business issues, such as:

      • Large High-Tech company – developing its workforce to work and manage virtually
      • Large Pharmaceutical company – developing teams post-merger to work more effectively
      • Major Data Systems organization – preparing employees for restructuring to satellite and remote offices and addressing new work requirements
      • Global Communications organization – developing high-potential leaders
      • Global Telecommunications company – developing advanced skills in the global account management team

      Wilson Learning's Virtual Learning Services

      Wilson Learning provides a variety of services to support clients in developing and delivering learning in virtual environments.

      Virtual Learning Programs

      Wilson Learning offers proven programs, designed specifically to engage and involve virtual learners in transferring learning to job requirements.

      Available programs that have met the test of delivering effective virtual learning include: Building Relationship Versatility, The Counselor Salesperson, The Consultative Process, and High-Performing Virtual Teams. Additional programs are on the way.

      Custom Programs

      Wilson Learning has a proven history of designing and developing programs customized to meet the specific needs of client participant groups based on the goals, strategies, markets, customers, and business priorities of the client’s industry and organization. This customization capability currently offers best-in-class virtual program design and delivery.

      Design Consulting Services

      Wilson Learning’s experienced designers can provide consulting services to clients who are creating virtual versions of their own conventionally delivered programs. With the assistance of someone experienced in the most significant virtual capabilities, clients can ensure that their organizational programs offer dynamic, engaging virtual training.

      Facilitator Development

      Wilson Learning’s experienced Master Facilitators provide train-the-trainer workshops to client trainers in every industry across the globe. They are using their past experience and their current advancement in virtual learning capabilities to prepare client facilitators to successfully deliver training via this learning transfer method that is so important to meeting current business needs.