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  • Tom Brooksher

Tips to Encourage Learners

Like building a better mousetrap, building a better training course doesn’t ensure students will beat a path to your door. Although you might not think of yourself as a salesperson or a promoter, if you want your course to succeed you may have to promote it to prospective students.

Here are things you can tell the world about your course to encourage students to enroll. Whether you’re promoting on social media or in your employee newsletter, each of these can help motivate students to invest their time in your masterpiece:

  1. Instructor’s/developer’s credentials: If it’s a face-to-face or virtual class with an instructor, tell about the instructor's knowledge and experience that makes them uniquely suited to teach the class. If it’s a self-directed online course, talk about the developer’s knowledge and experience.

  2. SMEs’ credentials: If subject matter experts contributed, they no doubt have education and experience to contribute to the course content. Tell prospective students about it so they can appreciate the depth of information behind the course.

  3. Course contents: Don’t forget to share the details of what’s in the course. Sometimes a topic that seems insignificant to you will be the main reason many students want to take the course.

  4. Instructional design: Give prospective students insight into the methodology behind the instructional design and why you chose it. Just knowing that someone gave careful thought to the best way to teach the material will help students understand that the course will be worth their time.

  5. Learning objectives: A well-designed course is built around specific learning objectives. But often the only time we communicate these to the student is through a simple list at the beginning of the course. Instead of this method, make the objectives a centerpiece of your promotion. After all, they’re a clear articulation of what students will learn in the course, and thus the whole reason they should take it.

  6. Course evaluations: Share what other students have said about the course. If the course is valuable, the evaluations should be proof!

  7. Profiles of former students: Tell the story of one or more former students and how the course helped them.

  8. What supervisors say: Interview a few supervisors whose direct reports have taken the course, and use the supervisors’ own words to show how the course made their employees better.

  9. Why this course is important: Explain to prospective students why this course matters. Why is it important for team members in their position to know and master the information you’ll be teaching them?

  10. What’s in it for me (WIIFM): Don’t overlook this; it’s the bottom line of all promotion. Clearly and simply explain to prospective students what they will get out of the course and how it will benefit them.

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