A significant consideration when planning for distance learning is having a support system to identify the needs of individuals.
It is understood that tailoring support and services for learners often facilitates their course progression and completion.
Timely and relevant support is often correlated with higher levels of satisfaction expressed by learners about their course and the training provided.
How do you determine the support needs of individual learners?
This is open to your individual RTO to determine how support will be made available to learners, whether directly or through arrangements with a third party. For many of us, when we first think about identifying the needs of learners, language literacy and numeracy skills or abilities often come to mind for learners undertaking training involving different technologies.
But in today's age, digital literacy, in particular, is a prerequisite skill that needs to be considered. And when we talk about Digital literacy for online and distance learning, it extends beyond whether a student can use a computer or not. We need to think about the types of tasks that a student will undertake during their course and whether or not the individual has the knowledge and capability to complete those tasks.
Take, for instance, if a student is required to record a video for assessment and then upload that file. Do they know how to do it?
Considering the digital literacy demands of your learners is vital to evaluate the impact that limited digital literacy skills may have on your RTO support systems.
Will additional support need to be provided to learners to equip them with the necessary skills to complete particular learning and assessment tasks? If the answer to that question is yes, then your organisation will need to think about how and when to provide the required support and in what form so that your learners will acquire or develop their digital literacy skills to meet the demands of the learning environment. One option would be to offer training as part of the enrolment process on using a particular technological resource, which can provide the student with both the technical know-how and skills required to enhance their overall learning experience.
Having a high level of support and enabling students to be able to be in close contact with their trainer is even more critical within a distance learning environment. A student should be able to ask questions about course requirements and any other matters of concern.
Contact options for distance learning can include telephone, email or through the RTO's learning management messaging system so that students can have their questions answered quickly. RTO Intelligence can support your RTO in a variety of ways. For more information, call us on 1300 833 424 or email firstname.lastname@example.org