Workers demand more hands-on approach, study reveals
Figures released today that coincide with Learning at Work Day (23 May) have found that nearly one third (33 per cent) of respondents prefer to learn by feeling or experiencing.
This is a key finding in the latest Skillsoft survey, which shows that learning through doing has overtaken a classroom-style approach as the top way to learn followed by just under one fifth (19 per cent) of those favouring a classroom-based approach and 17 per cent of respondents admitting to being visual learners.
The research, commissioned by Skillsoft and carried out by independent research company Opinion Matters, also found significant variations between learning styles of the youngest and oldest age groups. More than a quarter (26 per cent) of 16 - to 24 year olds favour a visual approach - looking at graphics, watching a demonstration or reading - compared to just six per cent of over 55s. However, the over 55s are more responsive to learning in a group setting with their peers and having the opportunity to discuss and learn from others experiences. 20 per cent in this age group prefer this style, compared to only five per cent of 16 - to 24 year-olds.
Commenting on the findings, Kevin Young, general manager, EMEA at Skillsoft, said: "Just as the content of training sessions needs to evolve to keep up with industry best practice and new technologies, so does the method used to deliver it to make it valuable and digestible to learners.
"Our research has shown clear differences between learning styles as a whole, but also between age groups and industry sectors. A classroom-led approach is no longer the de-facto way to learn, with people often becoming more engaged if the same content is delivered via different methods.
"We recommend companies take a blended approach to learning and use different platforms (classroom-based sessions, elearning, mobile learning) within their training programmes to ensure learning is accessible and valuable to all staff. Not only will this improve staff productivity and engagement, but less reliance on a classroom-style setting could also significantly reduce costs and travel time."