ELearning is a rapidly growing industry which is learning conducted via electronic media, typically the internet. It is the delivery of training or an educational program through digital means such as computers or mobile phones, allowing technology to facilitate learning anytime, in any part of the world. Electronic learning is a system based on formalized teaching where appropriate technologies are used to make learning possible and improve performance. Today eLearning is not a newfangled idea, in fact its growth and acceptance is snowballing particularly as technology becomes more economical. However, one of the biggest obstacles that eLearning has faced in the past few years is related to content development expenses.
Modern tools therefore give us the power to rule over such expenses and create effective training experiences for learners. Thus, in this article we are going to discuss how Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence may affect the future of eLearning.
Artificial Intelligence does not equal Machine Learning
Currently, there is quite a lot of confusion about the terms artificial intelligence and machine learning. Though companies use them interchangeably, and both terms are related to each other, but they definitely don’t mean the same thing. Artificial Intelligence (AI) refers to the theory and development of computer systems to be able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision making and translation between languages. AI algorithms don’t need to be altered manually, they do it automatically by analyzing information and finding current errors to prevent future problems.
Machine learning however, is a branch of artificial intelligence that provides systems the ability to automatically learn and improve detection of patterns in data from experience. It involves algorithms that identify certain threads that constantly refine information and provide greater personalization. It is the science of getting computers to perform without being overtly programmed. Machine learning algorithms involve statistical techniques that provide a computer the ability to “learn” and perform accordingly in various tasks.
Hence, machine learning is to artificial intelligence what books are to education.
How Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence will affect the future of eLearning
eLearning is a rapidly growing industry, and with technology constantly evolving and developing to boost speed and efficiency in learning, eLearning is the most advantaged form of advancement in technology. Modern tools in technology give the power to make the training experience more engaging as well as productive. Two of such tools are artificial intelligence and machine learning. Here we are going to discuss how artificial intelligence and machine learning may affect the future of eLearning and some of the advantages they have for online users and Learning Management Systems (LMS):
- Individualized ELearning Content – Machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms predict outcomes which help in providing personalized eLearning content based on past learning experiences and individual learning preferences. For instance, a learner who exhibits specific skills or talents will receive recommendations related to activities that enhance related skills and abilities. Artificial Intelligence and machine learning platforms ensure that learning speed and styles can be managed and monitored according to the needs and expectations of the learner. Hence both these tools can be used to group learners according to their strengths and weaknesses and accordingly assign learning material and training where such customization happens instantly.
- Better Resource Allocation – There are two advantages related to resource allocation that are provided by machine learning and artificial intelligence. The first is that learners get the exact resources they require to fill gaps in their learning abilities and material without wasting time in going through every single training material that can be otherwise utilized in learning something new. The second advantage is better resource allocation for the L&D team, they can spend less time analyzing graphics and developing powerful eLearning content, as both tools take care of the Big Data. Also, additional hours devoted to developing training content that might not result being useful are prevented since eLearning is customized and personalized.
- Improve Learner Motivation – With machine learning and artificial intelligence, learners are gaining access to more customized and personalized training experience, where they can specifically focus on only what’s important instead of going through endless information that’s of no use.
- This is in fact one of the demotivating factors that makes learners lose interest instantly while learning. Machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms monitoring student progress actively refine information eliminating material that is not useful, so learner motivation is enhanced, and attention is focused.
- Enhance ELearning ROI – Artificial Intelligence and machine learning significantly improve return on investment (ROI). Less online training time and greater customization increase profit margins and cut down costs that can be otherwise utilized in making training more effective and engaging. By analyzing the data generated by eLearning courses, machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms quickly detect spots that students are struggling in and adjust the course accordingly. Hence costs spend on developing irrelevant training material is cut down hence improving the returns on investment.
- Fast Paced and Efficient Training Programs – Benefits of tools such as artificial intelligence and machine learning make online learning overall a great engaging and effective learning experience. For example – online assessment results or survey findings. The machine learning system offers a comprehensive overview of the Big Data useful in predicting outcomes. Thus, corrections or additions can be made before the user encounters problems in training or switches to another program. Also, artificial intelligence can be used to make peer learning more productive and interactive
Thus, the answer to how artificial intelligence and machine learning may affect the future of eLearning is very simple. Modern technological tools have a great advantage for the eLearning industry. Not only are they effective in making learning an enjoyable and knowledgeable experience but also making it fast paced and useful. Modern features in machine learning and artificial intelligence have made huge progress in eLearning resulting in more and more people shifting from traditional classroom training to online learning.